The changing face of today’s legal market has been marked by the increasing proliferation of alternative legal services providers, with clients now able to choose between a broad spectrum
of businesses offering their services for tasks traditionally handled by law firms. Utilising service centres in low-cost jurisdictions and in-house technological tools, these providers are
often able to present a more efficient and cost-effective option without sacrificing quality – valuable traits in an era of increasing legal fees and decreasing law department budgets.
While traditionally the preserve of independent providers, including such early pioneers as Axiom, Integreon and UnitedLex, an increasing number of law firms have in recent years
unveiled their own captive, low-cost legal managed services platforms, with 2019 seeing highprofile launches from Eversheds Sutherland, Greenberg Traurig and Linklaters. The Big Four
accounting firms are also gathering momentum, offering clients a compelling combination of traditional and alternative legal services and extensive global capabilities.
Recognising the vast array of options confronting clients, Chambers and Partners’ first dedicated report on the alternative legal services industry identifies the leading providers across four core areas of the alternative legal services sector – flexible legal staffing, contract lifecycle management, litigation services and legal process outsourcing units – while also highlighting some of the industry’s
most prominent new entrants. The report is the product of interviews with the service providers themselves, their clients and third-party market insiders and analysing qualitative feedback
concerning technical ability, client service and value for money.
Key findings include:
- Independent providers remain the most popular choice for clients, with companies such as Integreon, Elevate and UnitedLex enjoying a strong reputation for their legal services
- The Big Four and law firm-owned platforms are steadily gaining ground, with more established law firm captive platforms competing directly with independent providers. EY’s acquisitions of
Riverview Law and Pangea3 has also catapulted it to the forefront of the alternative legal services market.
- Law firm captives are especially prominent in the flexible legal staffing sector, with clients increasingly turning to UK and US-based law firms for contract lawyers and temporary
Flexible legal staffing
Flexible staffing providers are regarded as among the original pioneers of the alternative legal services sector, with companies such as Axiom and Lawyers on Demand disrupting the legal industry through their provision of well-qualified legal resources for temporary assignments.
Contract lifecycle management
Considered the mainstay of legal work outsourced to third-party service providers, contract lifecycle management (CLM) platforms allow in-house legal departments to unlock value by shifting commoditised but often time-consuming and volume-intensive tasks to LPO providers and law companies.
Alongside eDiscovery*, the litigation services offered by alternative legal services providers encompass a broad scope of technology-based processes designed to automate volume and time-intensive tasks associated with commercial litigation and investigations.
*More details on eDiscovery technology providers can be found using this link for USA-based companies and this link for UK-based companies.
Law firm LPOs
Recent years have seen a throng of new arrivals into the alternative legal services market, dominated by captive platforms launched by law firms. A number of leading firms in the UK and USA have launched their own alternative services to clients, ranging from flexible staffing and managed through to more novel models which aggregate third-party services into composite solutions for clients.
As a ranked firm you are invited to take an enhanced profile which is accessed directly from the ranking table. This will allow you to highlight all your capabilities, contact information, provide you with Ranked in Chambers logos and give you platform to host your articles, case/work highlights and press releases.
We are also offering the opportunity for a select number of ranked firms to provide sponsored overviews relating to the ranking tables they are ranked within.
Please contact Jeremy Stephenson to learn more.
Find the top Lawyer and Law Firms across Alternative Legal Service Providers 2020 in our e-Edition, now available to download per chapter.Download