where are you in the legal foodchain?

ABSs will mean many new challenges for law firms.  A considerable threat is that existing sources of work may disappear, as current referrers of work decide to have a go at bringing the reserved worktypes in house and to stop sending cases out to lawyers.  Legal Edge has already been asked to scope out several such ABS projects for organisations which currently refer work to solicitors.

When we’re asked to consult with law firms, our advice is to clearly understand where their work is coming from, and whether there is any risk of it disappearing in the post ABS world.  Having this information to hand will allow for an informed strategy to ensure new instructions are retained, and can be developed.  A healthy mix of B2B and B2C is always a good start, and within each worktype.  If work is received from a single source for any worktype, then it is at risk.  Simple.  If there are contracts in place for the referral of work, do they contain guaranteed volumes?  In most cases, this is unlikely.  Again, a risk.

Another option for law firms is to offer white labelled services to the new potential ABSs.  Whilst the ABS might be eying up the more straightforward cases they refer out, they may still have requirements for parts of the process, or the more complex cases to be outsourced.  Starting to have these conversations now with referrers is vital.  Don’t wait for the work to dry up, or for someone else to do it.

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