Lay offs leave lawyers without support staff

Lay offs leave lawyers without support staff

November, 22, 2010 • Posted by 0 Comments

Legal researcherBack in November 2008, Legal Week reported that almost a quarter of the UK’s top 50 law firms were considering making redundancies in the current financial year, with 10% saying cuts in the next six months were probable. Five of the UK’s top 50 law firms were anticipating job losses by the end of the financial year, saying job cuts were either ‘likely’ or ‘very likely’. An additional 12% said cuts were ‘possible’. Not one firm in the top 50 could rule out redundancies altogether.

As the year ended and 2009 began, these cuts began to materialise.  In January 2009, Legal Week reported that one of our top local law firms, Freeth Cartwright, had kicked off a redundancy consultation that could affect up to 15 fee earners and 45 support staff.  It’s no surprise that the greater proportion of cuts would be to support staff and similar announcements across the UK showed this was a trend likely to continue.

April 2009 saw Herbert Smith in redundancy negotiations, set to lose up to 24 fee earners and professional support lawyers (PSLs) as well as nine paralegals, with the firm’s real estate group expected to lose nine fee earners and professional support lawyers (Legal Week, April 23 2009).

In August this year, another devastating announcement – cuts to the number of firms offering social, welfare and family aid (from 2,400 to 1,300) – meant that hundreds more face losing their jobs (Press Association, Aug 2010).  Then October saw two top 50 firms – Trowers & Hamlins and McGrigors – announcing redundancy consultations ahead of the Comprehensive Spending Review (Legal Week, Oct 28 2010).

It’s unsurprising that in this difficult times, the outsourcing of legal research, drafting and administrative tasks is in demand. These services enable firms to maintain the quality of service they provide to their clients whilst streamlining their services, cutting costs, making themselves more profitable and more competitive.

Contact us to chat about your legal outsourcing requirements and get a free quote.