Rely on the most comprehensive, up-to-date legal content designed and curated by lawyers for lawyers
Work faster and smarter to improve your drafting productivity without increasing risk
Accelerate the creation and use of high quality and trusted legal documents and forms
Streamline how you manage your legal business with proven tools and processes
Manage risk and compliance in your organisation to reduce your risk profile
Stay up to date and informed with insights from our trusted experts, news and information sources
Access the best content in the industry, effortlessly — confident that your news is trustworthy and up to date.
With over 30 practice areas, we have all bases covered. Find out how we can help
Our trusted tax intelligence solutions, highly-regarded exam training and education materials help guide and tutor Tax professionals
Regulatory, business information and analytics solutions that help professionals make better decisions
A leading provider of software platforms for professional services firms
In-depth analysis, commentary and practical information to help you protect your business
LexisNexis Blogs shed light on topics affecting the legal profession and the issues you're facing
Legal professionals trust us to help navigate change. Find out how we help ensure they exceed expectations
Lex Chat is a LexisNexis current affairs podcast sharing insights on topics for the legal profession
Discuss the latest legal developments, ask questions, and share best practice with other LexisPSL subscribers
According to new research, there are now over 800 lawyers working for ‘virtual’ law firms in the UK. Advances in technology has paved the way for so-called ‘virtual lawyers’, a group of self-employed lawyers harnessing remote IT access and flexible working hours to provide competitive fee arrangements to clients. We speak to a range of legal experts about the advent of the ‘virtual lawyer’ and what impact this might have on the legal market.
For Mark Harrison, managing partner at Flexlaw Solicitors, a virtual lawyer is one who is able to provide a full service to clients but at a lower cost because of their reduced overheads. ‘Virtual’, he says, doesn’t necessarily equate to second best, but usually indicates the lawyer ( through the use of technology) is going to have a degree of remoteness from the client on a day-to-day basis.
Having said that, remoteness is not a defining feature, and Harrison says virtual lawyers can meet ‘face-to-face’ when needed with routine work ‘actioned by email and telephone’ and marketing via digital investment and social media.
In terms of law firm set-up, Tariq Mubarak, managing director at Matrix Legal says the law firm could be a dedicated virtual law firm, sometimes referred to as a ‘dispersed law firm’, or could be a ‘traditional law firm, where the virtual lawyer happens to work remotely’.
He adds ‘this arrangement is akin to barristers and chambers’ with virtual lawyers usually remunerated on a profit share or ‘pay-as-you-bill’ basis, ie they share a percentage of their billing with their umbrella law firm.
Placing greater onus on the technology aspect, Chad E Burton, chief executive officer at CuroLegal, says the virtual lawyer is simply a lawyer who ‘leverages technology to run a modern law firm outside the traditional brick and mortar setting’.
This, he adds, typically means lawyers have established a cloud-based tech ecosystem in which their firm can easily interact with clients across the globe. In this set-up office space is leveraged where/when needed but is secondary to delivering legal services.
Burton says virtual law models are by definition ‘lean’ in nature which provide for greater ‘agility and flexibility’ in how the lawyer delivers legal services. This is a
Free trials are only available to individuals based in the UK
* denotes a required field
**excludes LexisPSL Practice Compliance, Practice Management and Risk and Compliance. To discuss trialling these LexisPSL services please email customer service via our online form. Free trials are only available to individuals based in the UK. We may terminate this trial at any time or decide not to give a trial, for any reason. Trial includes one question to LexisAsk during the length of the trial. See our full terms here.
Access this article and thousands of others like it free by subscribing to our blog.
Read full article
Already a subscriber? Login
0330 161 1234