In-house legal functions on the rise

By Grace Ormsby|22 August 2018
team, lawyers, in-house legal functions

Established in-house legal functions are growing Australia-wide, while more companies are implementing internal legal counsels and teams, a report has said.

The 2018 Mahlab Report uses market intelligence gathered from clients and candidates to indicate remuneration and rewards, trends and employment experience for private practice and in-house, to show that there has been a 10 per cent growth in existing legal functions within the corporate sector.

Higher than most law firm growth, the report attributes this existing legal function growth to an increase in regulation, a reduced reliance on external providers for the overseeing of IPOs, takeovers, major litigation or capital raisings.

The increase is most prominent across and within financial institutions. This is reported to be due to the financial services royal commission, which “has necessitated additional recruitment of contract staff into law firms and financial institutions alike as they grapple with the demands of a ‘fast and furious’ commission process and requests for information and analysis going back years.”

Advertisement
Advertisement

Notable growth was also present across the digital, professional services, and construction and infrastructure industries, but is manifesting itself across all Australian industries.

To explain the increasing implementation of in-house legal functions, the report said boards of listed companies are “particularly keen to have the governance framework and protection that an internal legal function provides.”

Cost is a major driver, but it was explained that “overseas investors often look to the general counsel as an essential member of a senior leadership team and query why this role does not exist.”

In response, Australian companies are “going to market for the first time” in establishing legal functions.

Overall, the report says the market outlook for in-house legal functions is “very positive,” and “well entrenched”, as it enjoys expansion and major upswing “at a rate not seen since pre-GFC days.”

SPONSORED CONTENT

 The Mahlab Report has revealed insight into the stark differences in in-house pay packets, as well as the varied salaries among corporate lawyers, depending on where their work is performed

It also said law firms will need to increasingly consider consolidating their offerings to remain competitive

In-house legal functions on the rise
Intro image
lawyersweekly logo
Corporate Counsel

latest

Australian Law Awards

Winners revealed for 2020 Australian Law Awards

Tribunal passes down lighter penalty to solicitor

Tribunal passes down lighter penalty to solicitor due to COVID-19 restrictions

The key data governance concerns for Aussie corporates

The key data governance concerns for Aussie corporates

Ministers not exempt from hotel quarantine questions

Ministers not exempt from hotel quarantine questions, judge says

FROM THE WEB
Recommended by Spike Native Network