Law firm expenses are up 4.7 percent --Outpacing revenue gains, survey finds

By Debra Cassens Weiss

Law firm expenses are up 4.7 percent for the first half of 2011, outpacing revenue increases of 3.7 percent, a survey has found.

Higher expenses are due partly to spring bonuses and partly to long-overdue infrastructure projects, according to Citi Private Bank, which surveyed law firms that are among the nation's top 200, as well as smaller law firms. Its findings are published in the Am Law Daily.

Revenue increased because of stronger demand and billing rates, and an increased amount of "inventory"-- work completed but not yet billed. Managing partners interviewed by the bank, who came mostly from the nation's top 50 law firms, also said realization had stabilized or improved.

The revenue findings "suggest that we could be seeing an easing of the pricing pressure of the last two years," the article says.

Published: Thu, Oct 27, 2011