Dispute work increase for law firms – a growing litigious society or a sign of people power?

The hammer of law

Legal Week has revealed that dispute work brought in more than a quarter of combined revenue (27.9%) across the UK’s largest law firms in the last year.  This was closely followed by corporate, at 26.5%, but double that of finance work, which accounted for just 14% of revenue.

The results reveal that the courtroom continues to be an attractive place to bring disputes, but behind the figures is a growing trend in litigation cases, likely brought by individuals, which is no doubt helped by the media.

From a layman’s perspective, simply turning on daytime TV tells you about what you can claim and your rights after an accident or injury, or if you’ve been dismissed from work.  Some marketers also use the direct option of cold-calling, though this is a more blanket approach that often feels more like a nuisance call.

Having worked in healthcare, one of the most litigious areas of practice, it is evident that more and more people are becoming aware of their rights, and providers are even more aware of the risks of bad practice, or a disgruntled patient or customer. Add to the mix the immediacy and visibility of social media, it is unsurprising that the shift in the balance of power has moved from the larger entity to the individual.

Whether the increase in disputes is a positive rise in the power of individuals, or a worrying social trend, one thing is for certain, it’s set to continue.

Halima Khatun

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