Corporations are Strengthening Their Law Departments

Corporations are Strengthening Their Law Departments


According to the 2010 Chief Legal Officer Survey conducted by legal industry consultant Altman Weil based in Newton Square, corporations are now strengthening their law departments as evidenced by increased internal budgets and hiring more paralegals and lawyers for the said departments. They are also minimizing giving recourse to outside counsel.

Out of the 174 Chief Legal Officers (CLO), 41% are planning to hire in-house lawyers within the next 12 months. 32% will be increasing the number of their paralegals. 63% has increased their internal budgets and 29% will be decreasing seeking the help of outside counsel.

Altman Weil has been a leading provider of management consulting services to legal organizations. Its principal, Daniel J. DiLucchio said that the law departments would still be relying for help on outside counsel but they are also implementing means that would be more cost-effective for their clients, and one of those ways is to add more internal resources like lawyers and paralegals.

The survey also showed that various law departments keep on increasing their usage of Alternative Fee Arrangements (AFA). They are now using other methods of determining payment aside from billable hours. 77% of the CLOs said that they are now using AFAs for work rendered by outside counsel. Although it is not all the time that AFAs are used because it cannot be applied to all types of matters, according to more than half of the CLOs.