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Jordan Furlong, author of the blog Law21: Dispatches From a Legal Profession On The Brink, is a leading analyst of the global legal market. A graduate of Queen’s University Faculty of Law in Ontario and former editor of three of Canada’s leading legal publications, Furlong’s blog is a must read for anyone interested in the business – and future – of the profession. For just a taste, check out this recent post, “The New Legal Economy,” exploring changes to not just the how and who of the work lawyers perform, but the what. “The truly disruptive impact of advanced technology in the law will be to reduce the incidence and volume of traditional legal work given by clients to lawyers,” Furlong writes. “This isn’t just a market change; this is the emergence of a new legal economy.”
WHITE PAPER: Legal Market Landscape Report
As momentum builds for regulatory reform of the practice of law, a state bar task force in California is coming under fire for having too many legal tech insiders among its 22 members. (Can’t help wondering where the in-house representation is, unless that’s covered by the former GC of the Legal Aid Foundation of L.A.) Indeed, negative sentiment is running strong as the task force considers recommendations, including lower barriers to participation in the practice of law by professionals outside the walled garden. These potentially momentous changes, along the lines of what we’ve seen in the UK and Australia, were triggered by a report commissioned by the bar from Professor William Henderson of Indiana University’s Maurer School of Law, who found that state regulation deprives most ordinary individual Californians – what he calls “PeopleLaw” – of access to justice. The same problem, lagging productivity, plagues lawyers serving what he calls “organizational” clients. “The legal profession is at an inflection point that requires action by regulators,” he writes. “Solving the problem of lagging legal productivity requires lawyers to closely collaborate with allied professionals from other disciplines.”
Published February 17, 2020.