In-house lawyer are afraid of overspending on outside counsel, report finds

According to a report published by In The House and, 73% of in-house counsel believe their legal departments are spending too much on their outside counsel. Also, more than one-quarter (26%) of them were “very concerned” or “extremely concerned” about overspending.

It doesn’t come as a surprise if the survey finds that over one-half (55%) of in-house counsel surveyed report that reducing outside legal spending is a priority in 2020. Almost half of the respondents (49%) said they believed their firms would come to accept the idea of using a third-party legal bill review service.

The results underline that 72% of in-house counsel believe that reductions in outside legal spending would be a valuable metric for their legal department to track, but  that the great majority (73%) of legal departments are not in a position to do so, since they lack any system for managing outside counsel spending.

Other key findings

However, going further the report shows that the experience of in-house lawyers with legal billing software is multifaceted. Barely 1 in 10 (11%) who use legal billing software find theirs to be “very” effective, while a large majority (68%) find them only “somewhat” effective.

Finally, 70% of in-house counsel (among those who do not already use such a service) would welcome a third-party bill review vendor, so long as the service would not significantly impact their legal budget and would ease the burden on their in-house legal team.