Continuing Legal Education

The Shrinking Pyramid: Implications for Law Practice and the Legal Profession

Archway - Union Station

April 24, 2015

Sponsored by
Georgetown Law Center for the Study of the Legal Profession
Novak Druce Centre for Professional Services, Said Business School, University of Oxford

Lunch panel sponsored by the International Bar Association

The Legal Services Act of 2007 in England and Wales ushered in a dramatic new era in the regulation of legal services.  The Act permits outside investment in law practices, authorizes combinations of lawyers and non-lawyers in service organizations, emphasizes risk-based regulation of legal services that focuses on outcomes rather than detailed rules, and contains other measures designed to loosen lawyers' monopoly on the provision of legal services.

Around the same time, law firm Slater & Gordon became the world's first law firm to raise capital from investors by listing on a public stock exchange.  Since 2007, other countries across the world have adopted or are considering changes inspired by the events in England, Wales, and Australia.  There is clear momentum in favor of rethinking some of the most basic assumptions about legal services and how they should be regulated. 

What have been the impacts of this remarkable shift, and what are its potential implications for the future of the legal profession?  What could it portend for the United States, the world's largest legal market, as well as global legal practice?  How does this shift in philosophy both shape and reflect structural changes in the market for legal services?  This day-long symposium will bring together scholars who have been studying these developments; regulators; and practitioners from law firms, corporate legal departments, and non-traditional legal service providers to discuss these and other questions.  Among the several confirmed speakers are Sir Michael Pitt, Chair of the Legal Services Board of England and Wales, and Andrew Grech, Managing Director of Slater & Gordon.  Please join us for what promises to be a stimulating exchange of ideas on the shape of the world to come. 

Program Agenda - coming soon!


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