Black Logo

Our site uses cookies to give you the best user experience and to collect and share information for analytics, advertising and personalization on this and other sites. Please select whether you consent to our use of cookies and related technologies (“Cookies”), as described in our Cookie Policy. You can return at any time from the same web browser to update your preferences. Please note that resetting your browser’s cookies will reset your preferences. You can control the use of some types of cookies through the Cookie Settings below, but note that if you choose to disable certain cookies, it may limit your use of certain features or functions on our services and websites.

Privacy Policy
Strictly Necessary Cookies

These cookies are required to enable core site functionality.

Functionality Cookies

Functionality cookies allow us to provide enhanced and more personalized content and features. In order to permit your connection our website, our servers receive and record information about your computer and browser, potentially including your IP address, browser type, and other software or hardware information. All of these features help us to improve your visit and assist in navigation of the sites’ features.

Analytics Cookies

We and our service providers may use analytics cookies, which are sometimes called performance cookies, to collect information about your use of our website, for instance, which pages you go to most. The information allows us to see the overall patterns of usage, help us record any difficulties users may have while using our website and can show us whether or not our advertising is effective.

Advertising And Targeting Cookies

We may use third party advertising and targeting cookies to correlate your use of our website to personal information obtained about you so that we may more clearly target the information we provide you to the specific items we think you will find interesting, based on your prior online activities and preferences. We also may use these cookies to deliver ads that we believe are relevant to you and your interests.

For more information, view our Cookie Policy


New Law 2021: Legal Services Predictions for the Year Ahead

Legility 01 / 11 / 21

The staggering impact of the coronavirus pandemic spurred abrupt changes and adaptations in the legal industry in 2020 that no one could have anticipated. The question of 2021 is, how much of those changes will be permanent, and when will we know?

A picture of the "new normal" for legal services may emerge in autumn

Widespread stay-at-home orders accelerated several rising trends in the legal field, including wider adoption of remote working arrangements for lawyers of all stripes and supplementing in-house counsel teams with flexible legal talent.

By the back third of the year, we should have a better idea of what the “new normal” looks like for the legal world. Much of the outlook depends on whether the majority of the populace is inoculated against COVID-19. However, if vaccination proceeds as currently projected, we predict that by October, we will have a clearer picture of how much of those legal trends have graduated to business-as-usual.

Virtual managed review will become a regular feature

The necessity of remote review projects over this past year has given law firms and corporations plenty of time and examples to “prove the concept” of this mode of review. Our clients have found that these virtual services more than meet their needs while providing welcome flexibility in terms of review rates, locations, and skillsets.

Uncoupling review work from centralized locations infuses review projects with even more nimbleness. Remote reviews can save time and therefore money and even give you access to legal talent and technology outside your geographical area

Thanks to greater familiarity with virtual reviews during the pandemic, legal consumers will become savvier judges of remote solutions and deploy more intentional criteria to select quality providers.

Clients will expect their review partners to be able to provide:

  • Agile solutions and strategic workflows that maximize transparency and control while minimizing overall costs;
  • Established processes for real-time quality assurance such as daily updates on productivity and project status;
  • Multilayered information security to include virtual review technology with advanced multifactor verification, secure user segmentation in which lawyers can work without seeing each other’s materials, and ISO-certified private secure data centers;
  • Robust screening and information security training of lawyers.

Remote work and flexible legal talent won't go back into the genie's bottle

The pandemic changed the workplace environment for legal professionals almost overnight. Remote and flexible working arrangements for lawyers will continue to proliferate in 2021 and beyond.

Talented lawyers have always sought flexible working arrangements outside partner-track firm work and standard corporate 9-to-5 gigs – whether to spend more time with their families, pursue their hobbies, or any other reason. And this year, amid continued economic uncertainty caused by the pandemic, flexible legal talent will also be particularly attractive to employers and clients. Flexible talent allows corporate counsel to deploy the resources that they need for a certain timeframe without overcommitting or going over budget. Flexible lawyers make financial sense for legal departments not only because you can use them – and pay for them – only when you need them but their average hourly rates are about one-third of the equivalent lawyer from a firm.

Flexible legal talent providers like Legility will continue to grow our roster of credentialed legal experts, delivering flexibility and expertise to organizations only when and where it’s needed for exactly as long as they need it.

'New Law' is here to stay, and demand will grow

While alternative legal service providers (ALSPs) are still relevant, the term doesn’t fully encompass the range of innovative, technology-enabled services today’s New Law companies can offer. New Law providers will continue to need to differentiate themselves from cost-arbitraging ALSPs by focusing on underlying processes that deliver strategic benefits to clients. 

While New Law companies may, in fact, offer a lower price point, like ALSPs, they also offer added value through the innovative use of technology and artificial intelligence and enhancement of traditional law practice.

Demand for the alternative pricing models, creative legal solutions, and nontraditional staffing found in New Law isn’t expected to lose pace in the foreseeable future.

Learn more about Legility’s new law solutions.


About the author


Legility, a leading provider of technology-enabled legal services, provides consulting, technology, managed solutions, and flexible legal talent to corporations and law firms. The company has more than 1,000 lawyers, engineers, consultants, technology and data specialists, and operational experts serving more than one-third of the Fortune 100 and one-quarter of the Am Law 200. Legility helps its clients improve operational efficiency. By combining people, processes, and technology, Legility offers innovative and bundled solutions that align with how the legal market is increasingly looking to engage.

Subscribe to Insights

Your one-stop shop for the Legility logo & more.

Your one-stop shop for the Legility logo, brand guidelines, photography assets, and more.

Subscribe to insights