Morning Briefing: Adapt or collapse – why lawyers need to change

by NZ Lawyer25 Sep 2014
Adapt or collapse – why lawyers need to change
Speaking at this week’s Clio Cloud Conference in Chicago, specialist IT lawyer Professor Richard Susskind has told delegates that they need to be thinking of working with other professionals and to embrace technology, or risk being left behind. Susskind is the author of “The End of Lawyers?” and his latest “Tomorrow’s Lawyers” in which he focuses on the need for the profession to look into the future and change to embrace it. He sees virtual courtrooms, online document production and online being vital to law firms. He says that he expects the law business to change more in the next two decades than in the last two centuries.
The good news is that you’re competent; the bad news is that you’re cold
A new study has been published by a professor and graduate at Princeton University in which a group were asked to rank occupations according to their ‘competence’ and their ‘warmth’. So, how did lawyers fare? On the plus side, you couldn’t be considered more competent unless you were a scientist, engineer or doctor. Lawyers beat professors, bankers, teachers, writers and police officers in that marker. However when it comes to warmth the legal profession fares worse than most, including all those already mentioned plus dishwashers, garbage collectors and even politicians. In fact when it comes to a friendly demeanour lawyers were outdone by every occupation in the survey with the exception of prostitutes; although lawyers did beat those workers on competence!

Another partner leaves Addleshaws
Addleshaw Goddard has lost another partner as head of fraud, regulatory and corporate crime, Ian Hargreaves, leaves to join King & Wood Mallesons. He leaves after 20 years with Addleshaws where he built up a client base of large corporates and wealthy individuals. He is the fifth partner to leave the firm this year, following the departure of managing partner Paul Devitt.
UAE is hiring
Lawyers who are qualified in United Arab Emirates law are in demand again following a slowdown during the economic crisis. A report from specialist legal recruitment firm Fox Rodney Search says that international firms are keen to have a base in the Emirates staffed by local specialists. Of the new entrants to the market, half are US firms.