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Sometimes, you have to break a few eggs

The historical law firm model is to blame for the commercial predicament the industry finds itself in. Dramatic change is the only way to undo decades of inertia

6 May 2016

The management of law firms face a number of challenges arising from particular dramatic changes in the modern legal landscape.

Historically, owners of businesses in the legal profession have enjoyed good margins and high levels of profitability. However, those owners have tended to be cash extractive, with the result that investment in the business has been insufficient to prepare for changes brought about by increased regulation and advances in technology.

Consequently, a vicious circle has developed around the last thirty years. As the failure to invest prudently has led to margin and cash flow erosion, the case for fresh investment capital has begun to deteriorate. Incoming partners are encouraged to seek partnership capital loans for investment, as capital in the business.

This cash has then tended to be withdrawn by outgoing partners. Th...

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