Legal Outsourcing Consultant Predicts More Onshoring

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The term “legal outsourcing” often conjures up images of cut-rate offshore companies staffed by lawyers and support staffers laboring in anonymity on behalf of law firms.

But outsourcing will likely be handled increasingly by companies in the United States and the United Kingdom, according to a list of top 10 predictions developed by Fronterion, an international consulting firm for outsourced legal services. The company outlined its predictions in a press release (PDF) and more detailed report (PDF).

“Onshore LPO represents an alternative for legal professionals who are wary of sending work to outside jurisdictions,” the report says. “Growth in onshore delivery is a result of third-party vendor investment in onshore solutions as well as captive centers developed by major law firms.”

The Indian outsourcing company Pangea3, acquired by Thomson Reuters in November, is planning an expansion in the United States, Pangea3’s CEO told Legally India after news of the sale broke. There are still no decisions on locations and headcounts, said CEO Sanjay Kamlani, but the goal is to open legal process outsourcing centers in the U.S. that mirror those in India.

The Fronterion report also predicts that law firms will become more willing to acknowledge their use of legal process outsourcing. The reason: A major U.S. law firm is expected to make an “imminent” announcement about its work with LPO vendors. “A domino effect may occur as law firms strive to announce their outsourcing strategy,” the report says.

Earlier this year Fronterion surveyed the nation’s top law firms about their use of legal outsourcing, but 83 percent refused to answer the questions.

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