2020 is behind us now, and we have stepped into the New Year with new hopes. It was an incredibly tumultuous year with a lot of uncertainties.The Covid-19 threw up many unforeseen international lawyers challenges which no one ever anticipated. However, the year is over now, and we all look forward to the year 2021 with renewed hope and enthusiasm.
The year was extremely challenging, to say the least. It affected everybody across industry, globally, with a few exceptions, of course. The pandemic has completely changed the way we work and the legal industry has been no different. This article tries to highlight international lawyers challenges in the year 20201.
The pandemic will come to an end sooner than later, but it certainly has brought in a new world order. The legal industry, though affected to a lesser extent as compared to others, faced severe existential challenges and would continue to do so in the foreseeable future. Be it domestic or international, challenges faced by lawyers in the wake of this pandemic has been quite grave. We discuss, hereunder, the biggest international lawyers challenges facing in 2021.
What the Future Holds for the Legal Community
The situation is largely expected to remain more or less similar to the year gone by, at least for the first few months, with uncertainty being the major factor for businesses across the world. However, this is the time to devise new ways to stand up to the present challenges and strategize for the future. As the situation across the globe is the same, an international law firm network would have an important role to play.
Some research on law firms have indicated that after the initial setback in wake of the pandemic, their caseload is more or less back to the 2019 levels, but firms still face shortage in monthly billings.
This is primarily because many factors pertaining to the courts working remain out of the lawyers’ control. Also, many clients are not sure whether to pursue their legal matters in these uncertain times. It is, therefore, important that lawyers find new ways to maximize their revenue by exploiting whatever opportunities that come their way.
In this regard, lawyers need to keep themselves ready for such clients who might be withholding their legal matters currently or are unsure of whether to pursue their cases in the current situation. Lawyers need to proactively follow such clients and convince them to take up their legal matters. The situation is the same throughout the world, and law firms that have global clientele should be part of some international legal network to withstand the challenge.
Reliance on Technology
With lock downs and other restrictions, most work is being done remotely. This means that technology has an important role to play. Research has shown that the majority of consumers are more comfortable using technology now, and that it is more important to them than ever before.
This is a significant shift as people have adjusted themselves to the needs of the current situation and their expectations from professional service providers, including lawyers, have shown a positive change. Consumers have become accustomed to seeking solutions remotely with tools, such as video conferencing, etc. as it provides cost and time saving. It also offers other benefits such flexibility and paperless work.In view of this significant change in the work culture, lawyers need to quickly adapt themselves to meet the new challenges.
Globalization is the buzzword in today’s economy. Every business is expanding beyond the shores of their native country to find new business opportunities and scale up their business. In such a scenario, law firms too need to expand globally to cater to the demands of their top clients and also to find new opportunities.
Different countries have different rules and regulations and law firms have to get themselves acquainted to the local laws to stand up to the challenges faced, both in terms of the local laws and the competition from the already established local law firms. Here, being part of an international lawyers network would be crucial.
Low-Cost Legal Service Providers
With the advent of technology, there has been an influx of low cost online legal service providers that cater to clients globally. Traditional law firms had already been facing serious challenges from them that have now been compounded by the pandemic which has forced everyone to think and work differently, particularly remote or virtual work. Every international law attorney has to chalk out new strategies to face the challenge posed by the online legal aid providers in terms of cost competitiveness and retaining their clients.
Law has always been a very competitive profession, and with the constant increase in lawyers’ density across the globe, the competition has been getting tougher by the day. Add to this the challenges posed by the pandemic, international lawyers challenges have grown manifold and lawyers quickly need to adapt themselves to face up to the challenge.