A survey of 120 service sector businesses from the top 1,000 UK companies by NOP on behalf of Theodore Goddard concludes that "Brussels red tape is drowning British business".
The report, entitled The People Business: A New Legal Frontier, makes the claim on the basis that despite 800 new regulations from Brussels last year alone, only 3 per cent of company directors "feel the need for advice on any aspect of Euro law".
According to the City firm, the survey, which will be distributed to its clients, demonstrates "a growing need for legal advice on a range of matters including personnel issues, computer contracts, protecting ideas and staying on the right side of European regulations".
Among the seven "survey highlights" are the conclusions that "bewildered bosses" are "at the mercy of computers" and "Britain may be robbed of its best ideas".
A spokesperson for Theodore Goddard said: "If the top companies in the country are unaware of their growing need for legal advice then there must be many more that need to be alerted by a survey like this.
The spokesperson added that the survey would act as a valuable service to businesses because it would alert them to potential problem areas.
"Protection and prevention is always cheaper in the long run."