Houston companies hiring more in-house lawyers to save money
October 24, 2014

Houston has drawn the interest and business of many top American law firms that want to capitalize on the high volume of energy transactions and litigation. But with those big-time national firms comes big-time national price tags.

As a result, some Houston companies are reconsidering outsourcing their legal needs in favor of keeping in-house lawyers, said Alysa Schildcrout, managing principal at Houston-based Amicus Search Group, an executive search firm with an emphasis on legal services.

Companies would then turn to outside counsel only for "big-ticket items" said Schildcrout, such as litigation where very specialized experience may be needed...

Another impact of national law firms moving into Houston is the near-predatory poaching of lawyers at Houston firms, and overall consolidation in the industry, is the overall lowering of the headcount at law firms in Houston, and thus the more efficient use of office space.

According to a report from Savills Studley, a commercial real estate firm and subsidiary of London-based Savills PLC, revenue from legal services was down 0.8 percent at the end of 2013, and the percentage of all lawyers that work for a legal services firm has dropped form 65.5 percent in 2008 to 63.3 percent in 2013.

This definitely holds true in Houston, said Steve Biegel, Houston branch manager at Savills Studley. Law firms in turn are becoming much more efficient in their use of office space.

Houston companies hiring more in-house lawyers to save money

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