Having spent more than 25 years of my life promoting the idea of ‘the business of law’ and the role of professional management in it, I commend the Institute of Legal Finance & Management for its mission and work. I also very much hope that its members share my excitement and enthusiasm as we approach 2012.
Interestingly, what we might describe as ‘the post-LSA world’ is not specifically driven by the Legal Services Act. The legislation and accompanying changes in regulation are now part of a much broader and deeper shift in the nature of 21st-century legal practice. The shift reflects fundamental changes arising in a mature legal economy working its inevitable way towards a new bargain with increasingly well-informed and sophisticated buyers of services in an over-supplied market. This bargain – and the pace of change – is accelerated by the financial crisis and the Act’s liberalising impetus; but these are accelerators rather than drivers. The change would have happened anyway.