Co-operation is best option

Helen Sage reports

Private practitioners prefer working alongside in-house local government lawyers rather than competing for their work, said departing secretary general of the Law Society and past chair of the local government group John Hayes.

Speaking at the European Policy Forum on the future of the legal profession, Hayes said the trend of public and private employers outsourcing legal work had reversed.

"I foresee that in-house lawyers will continue to play a crucial role not only for the specialist legal service they provide, but also as controllers of the cost and quality of external legal advice," he said.