Six for the road

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I’ve been an active contributor lately to a number of other blogs and periodicals, so I thought you might be interested in checking some of them out. Here are six articles I’ve written at other legal sites recently.

1. “Letting the client decide,” Slaw: Brand new this morning, my newest column looks at a UK firm whose portfolio of alternative fee arrangements includes an offer to give the client the right to set the final price.

2. “Rethinking the case law update: who are you talking to?“, Law Firm Web Strategy: one of two recent columns at Stem Legal‘s blog, this one asks why we still rely on that old legal publishing standby, the case law update.

3. “Talk to me: putting an end to canned conversations,” Law Firm Web Strategy: My second Stem Legal column continues the recent theme of “lawyer communication” issues by examining voice mail in law firms.

4. “Associate compensation meets the merit system,The Lawyers Weekly: The first of two recent columns at The Lawyers Weekly reviews the latest developments on merit-based associate pay systems.

5. “Law schools and the risk of irrelevance,The Lawyers Weekly: This column generated a lot of Twitter activity and direct emails, which tells me the disconnect between law school and law practice is hitting a nerve.

6. “The 21st-century law firm,” CBAPracticeLink: Finally, an article published at CBA PracticeLink pulls together several diverse strands of lawyer innovation and marketplace evolution into a model of the future law firm.

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One Response to “Six for the road”

  1. Norm Letalik

    Jordan,
    I agree with your comments regarding law schools and the gap in what law schools offer and what students need to practice law. When I went to law school, class of ’79, the cost of law school tuition was not significantly different from undergraduate tuition. At most law schools in Canada that has changed so that law students now pay a premium that is typically at least double of most undergraduate tuitions. Law schools could do this because those applying felt that they could enhance their earning power with a law degree, typically by going into practice. I believe that Osgoode Hall Law School took a survey of their students about 2 years ago that showed more than 90% expected to practice law. Given this expectation, it is rather facile on the part of law schools to say that it is up to the provincial bar societies to prepare their graduates for the practice of law. The unfortunate reality is that unless law schools partner with volunteers from the practicing legal community, few would be in a position to prepare their students for law practice. Increasingly law faculty are taken from the ranks of those with SJD degrees, or doctorates in other disciplines and it is rare to find faculty with both significant law practice experience and an SJD.
    The big law firms all have extensive training and mentoring programs which can provide the missing training. It is those law students that don’t work for large firms that have the greatest difficulty in making the transition into the practice of law and are ill-served by their law school training.
    Regards,
    Norm

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