13 March 2008 | Paul Snell
More than half of businesses believe the growth in the price of legal fees is unsustainable and law firms need to demonstrate better value for money.
The survey by legal firm Eversheds, which interviewed 50 directors at high-profile companies and 50 partners of the top 25 law firms, found many firms did not feel they could negotiate legal fees down, but 57 per cent were concerned about the rising cost. However, only 21 per cent of law firms said adding value was among their most important challenges in the future.
David Gray, chief executive at Eversheds, said law firms could no longer charge increasing fees without demonstrating added value. "Businesses are much less likely to approve quotations that neglect to offer detailed scientific breakdowns of the work at hand, or are perceived not to offer value for money. While the research shows the client-lawyer relationship is improving, clients are increasingly calling on their legal providers to become more commercial."