Costs competence concerns leave law firms exposed to existential risks, say Burcher Jennings


Burcher JenningsFrom Legal Futures’ Associate Richard Allen, Senior Consultant at Burcher Jennings.

The costs landscape may feel a bit “all quiet on the Western Front” – but a year on from Lord Justice Jackson’s speech on supplemental costs, and with Government pledged to review the 2013 Jackson reforms, we’re still navigating a costs minefield.

The fresh review seems certain to extend fixed costs into multi-track cases. Meanwhile, the post-Jackson consolidation in the legal sector still feels like a dog that is yet to truly have its day. On my travels around the UK’s law firms, while I see many thriving, many more seem to be muddling through and waiting for something to turn up.

Concerns about protecting access to justice and the consumer rights of those buying legal services are laudable. But to deliver those objectives, we need to maintain a viable legal industry – so ensuring reasonable law firm profits are sustained must be the third point of the triangle.

It is against that backdrop that Burcher Jennings has launched a new series of Costs Masterclasses. Designed to build confidence in handling costs, and to help law firms remove the huge risk created by failing to align case and practice management with sound business and financial principles.

I lead the Burcher Jennings Legal Costs Academy – drawing on over 30 years’ as a litigator and costs lawyer, and my experience as one of the few Costs Lawyers to be made a partner in private practice. Participants will benefit from a range of highly practical courses, including our Costs Masterclass, all of which provide clear advice on tactics and strategies tailored to individual practices.

Contrary, perhaps, to the popular caricature, lawyers are often better at delivering for clients than they can be at managing their own money, margins and profits. This course will help join the dots, which is in the long-term interests of a profession capable of continuing to deliver access to justice and delivering for consumers of legal services.

For more information about bespoke training or our Legal Costs Academy, please contact Richard Allen on 07714 745 711. The next Group Costs Masterclass will run on 26 September 2018, in London.

Associate News is provided by Litigation Futures Associates.
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