The Need for Overseas Legal Services Continues to Grow

A new study of top in-house attorneys at U.S. corporations suggests that a majority of respondents see an increasing need for overseas legal support across a wide variety of practice areas.

The survey of more than 200 key U.S. corporate decision-makers involved in the purchase of overseas legal services examined information and selection preferences.

Notably, the data shows that 85% of U.S. companies and divisions do not maintain a formal preferred list of foreign firms and/or lawyers.

While these companies continue to rely heavily on referrals and recommendations, the survey also shows that new tools are playing a growing role in sourcing efforts.

The study points out that more than 65% of respondents named websites as a key resource used to identify and select overseas law firm partners, while 26% cited seminars, conferences, and events.

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Intellectual property matters were cited most frequently by respondents as the area where overseas legal advice was needed (67%), followed by labor and employment law (58%) and litigation/arbitration (56%).

Finally, the respondents sought outside counsel most frequently in Europe, led by the U.K. (59%). Canada (50%) and China (46%) followed closely as the most frequently mentioned individual countries.

This research study was conducted by ALM’s Corporate Counsel, a trade publication for general counsel and in-house attorneys at corporations across the country.

Elaine Rigoli has nearly 15 years of experience managing content and community for various B2B and consumer websites. Elaine has written thousands of business and technology articles and has been quoted in The Wall Street Journal and eWeek, among other publications.

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