Clients ditch loyalty in search for better value

CLIENTS are increasingly shopping around on the grounds of price and quality to find the most suitable law firms, according to a report on the buying and selling of legal services.

The report, which includes findings from a survey of the top 60 law firms, reveals that clients are becoming less loyal to their law firms and are spreading their work around a number of practices.

Published by FT Professional Publishing last week, the study observes that many client companies have become concerned about costs during the recession.

The survey reveals that in response to this many of the smaller firms in the top 100 are considering mergers, and that practices are generating more business abroad and offering discounts when clients spend large amounts of money.

Caroline Bate, business analyst at Datamonitor and co-author of the report, said: “The recession has done much to sensitise firms to the 'cost plus' pricing structures law firms were able to impose in the past.

“Today's corporate consumer is much more inclined to ask for fixed fee or contingency fee work and is keen to ensure that the law firm, selected for its specialisation in one particular area, charges only for a specific set of deliverables agreed upon beforehand.”