Legal market faces turbulence

19 January, 2015

The Legal Services Board (LSB) have predicted that the profession could soon see a massive shake-up, which will see new unique entrants, consolidation of other firms and the exit of those who cannot keep up with the rate of change.

Speaking in London, Caroline Wallace strategy director of the LSB said that as the market place got more crowded, firms would either find themselves sinking or swimming as they tried to keep up with the change.

During her speech she highlighted the importance of competition and liberalisation in driving improvements for consumers of legal services and said that in future there was likely to be greater consolidation, as firms sought to increase their competitiveness.

She recommended firms to keep investing in useful and helpful technology and providing customers with access to a wider portfolio of related services and expertise.

“There are likely to be more providers exiting the market than in the past. This is an inevitable product of an increasingly competitive market place,” said Ms Wallace.

“Some new business models won’t work. Some decisions to scale up will result in failure. Some providers that are reliant on a declining flow of legal aid work will be unable to find alternative income streams.

“It is also probable that expansion of the regulated sector, including alternative business structures, will be at least matched – if not exceeded – by expansion of the unregulated sector where there are few barriers to entry and a lower (regulatory) cost base.”

She said she also envisaged more legal and non-legal services being brought under one roof to provide customers with a one stop shop for related services. She concluded by saying that competition and not regulation was guiding the legal market and that firms need to prepare themselves for turbulence in the market.

Being prepared and adaptable to changes is key to remaining successful as a firm. At Watson Buckle we can ensure your firm maintains an adaptable budget and has complete control of cash-flow so it is able to meet any challenges it may face.

If you have any concerns about the future of the legal sector, then please contact us.