A life outside the mega-firms

On The Lawyer today there are two heartwarming stories of firms keen to carve out a space for themselves in the new legal world order.

First up is Keystone Law, which has added five lawyers to its ranks – including partners from Salans and Thomas Eggar – and looks to be making good on its threats (or is that promises?) to attract 50 new lawyers and increase turnover from £11.2m to £25m within the next three years.

For those that aren’t au fait with Keystone, the firm has something of a different working model. The firm, which gets by mostly on corporate and commercial work, but also has a growing property practice, has around 100 lawyers, all of whom work from home and are paid on a merit basis, while the only partners – James Knight and William Robins – work on client relationships. All back office staff are housed in a single office to keep costs down.

The other story of burgeoning growth comes from a property-led merger between West End firms Cramer Pelmont and Gilbert Turner Coomber.

Cavendish will be run by former investment banker Alexis Brassey – who says that private equity investment is a distinct possibility.

Two different models, but more evidence that for many, BigLaw isn’t always better.


Also on TheLawyer.com:

  • Eon has named a new head of UK legal as the company finalises a property panel review and Scottish panel using a blind auctioning tendering scheme;

  • What, exactly, have topless pictures of the Duchess of Cambridge got to do with free speech? Very little, opines Withers partner Amber Melville-Brown;

  • And, the taxman has his sights on London lawyers and barristers fear that a change on the taxability of work-in-progress could leave them vulnerable.