Posts Tagged ‘LPO’

Cornell Journal of Law & Public Policy: Predatory Student Loan Lenders, Middle Class Hope for Upward Mobility, the Legal Industry and the Inevitable Bubble

As some potential law students continue to await LSAT scores, law school admissions or are wondering whether or not going to law school will give them that one chance at a better life, it would benefit you to read the following:

Being led to the slaughter

A law journal article: 20 Cornell Journal of Law & Public Policy 67 (2010)
Options for Student Loan Borrowers: A Derivatives-Based Proposal to Protect Students and Control Debt Fueled Inflation in the Higher Education Market, Michael C. Macchiarola; Arun Abraham

O.k. so this article is 72 pages, obviously I won’t delve into the entire piece but I am placing some introductory quotes in which the author is direct with failing legal industry and how the student loan industry are basically predators. He specifically discusses law schools and new lawyers are a bad investment. the author is a ‘distinguished lecturer.’ The author is a law professor and is honest enough to basically state that going to law school isn’t worth it. Do you 0Ls get it? one of your potential professors is telling you that LAW SCHOOL IS A BAD INVESTMENT!

Here are the Table of Contents for a very brief overview:
INTRODUCTION                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I. THE RUNAWAY COSTS OF AMERICAN LEGAL EDUCATION
By the Numbers
The Causes: A Combustible Mix of Accreditation,Rankings, Peculiar Incentives and Federal Encouragement
A Brief History of the Law School and Its Accreditation
The Rankings Game
The Peculiar Incentives of the Law School Faculty
The Federal Government and the Student Loan Market
The Scope of Government Involvement
Crisis in the Market and the Emergence of SAFRA
Income-Based Repayment and More of the Same
“For-Profit” Schools and a Way Forward

THE DISAPPOINTING REVENUE PICTURE FOR LAW SCHOOL GRADUATES
INFORMATION ASYMMETRIES AND ENTERPRISE LIABILITY
Informational Asymmetries Abound
Applying Lessons from Enterprise Liability Theory

Now for some introductory quotes:
Runaway tuitions and the burdensome student debt required for most Americans to obtain a post-secondary degree are under scrutiny like never before.4 Evidence is beginning to mount that, for too many students, debt-financed education represents a stifling encumbrance instead of the great investment that society’s collective commonsense has long advanced.5 Such a finding is unsurprising in light of the fact that, for too long, the value of education has been reflexively embraced without adequate examination of its cost. (p. 69-70)

As most bloggers have been stating, the cost is not worth the proposed benefit with all of the practical variables: economy, shrinking industry, inflation, lower salaries, loan payments and their capitalized interest as well as the time and psychological warfare this field demands.

The cost of attending law school, for example, has increased at two to three times the rate of inflation over the last three decades.11 The promise of accessible loans has made loan eligible middle- and lower-income students an easy mark for unabashed, aggressive student-loan marketing.12 “The end result,” in fact, “has been an unprecedented, debt-fueled wealth transfer from students of modest means to the increasingly prosperous higher education industry and opportunistic student loan lenders.” (p. 71-72)

Now deemed “McLaw” this along with LPOs and general outsourcing has set the middle class population in a cycle of perpetual financial slavery. Upward mobility is not founded in usurious personal debt. Do not think of the titles. Do not think of prestige. Think of your life and happiness and with any common sense you will decide not to attend law school.

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Legal Outsourcing Company: Someone’s thriving from Lawyers’ Misery PART II

 

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Wow, in the last post I discussed the vendor company iBridge, now we have actual LAW FIRMS that just focus on document reviewe and e-discovery. Wait, you mean that it is not lucrative to practice law? Apparently not. Introducing:  Ryley Carlock, a law firm which thrives on actual document review by its now knew facility. Wow, there’s that word again facility (factory).  Here’s the article stint:

Ryley Carlock opening Michigan center – Phoenix Business Journal, June 17, 2010.  

The Phoenix-based law offices of Ryley Carlock & Applewhite PC will open a new document review center in Grand Rapids, Mich., next month.

Ryley’s document review practice group helps clients manage electronic and physical documents related to lawsuits, evidence discovery and regulatory compliance . The new center will expand on the firms abilities in those areas. This firm is also implementing the business model whereby the contract attorneys will be working for these types of businesses eliminating the need for major law firms to hire through placement agencies. Temporary agencies are next on the chopping block in the big legal-business shift of the legal industry. For some reason, I shed no tear. For all the times decent attorneys were placed in surreal, mental hospital-like conditions with poor sanitary conditions, recruiters and managers who overlook or mishandle violations, improper (we’re talking extreme) near violent-like work conditions with the expection to produce a certain amount of work per day, I say let the games begin. Oh and yes, I forgot to mention the horrendous skimming off contractual attorneys hourly rate whereby they make the same or less than plumbers, mechanics, construction workers, etc. I respect those that do manual labor more, they see what their hands have wrought, they actually constructed something…o.k…I’m back.

Ryley attorney Matt Clarke said the Michigan legal documentation center will start out at 4,000 square feet and accommodate 30 to 40 attorneys. He said it could grow to 16,000 square feet.

Clarke and Ryley Managing Partner Rudy Parga said the Michigan location will help the firm service clients in the Northeast and Midwest. [emphasis mine]. So, out of the major legal markets in the United States: Mid-Atlantic, Midwest and West (California), this firm is providing services for two of the three markets. For people who continue to tell lawyers that the East Coast is the economic hub and you can always get a job there, I hope this has enlightened you.

“It give us more touches of our clients,” Parga said.

Parga said as much as half of Ryley’s legal document review work comes from other law firms representing clients in complex, paperwork-heavy cases and lawsuits. No need for new attorneys, “facilities” have it covered.

p.s.: MarketWatch recently featured Epiq Systems, another vendor who provides “innovative” solutions for e-discovery: June 15, 2010: Epiq Systems Retires $50 Million Convertible Debt and Expands Senior Revolving Credit Facility – MarketWatch; and take a look at their brief business model: The Epiq Difference, you’ll see on p.2 where the company provides contract attorneys. And you guys used to laugh at the weird IT guys, looks like they’re having the last laugh.

Legal Outsourcing Company: Someone’s thriving from Lawyers’ Misery

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On June 2, 2010 Corporate Counsel publishes an article regarding Wipro an Indian-BASED legal process outsourcing company.[

Wipro Legal Process Outsourcing Creates Gold Standard For Customer Value] and the same company will provide LPO services to Microsoft [Wipro to provide LPO to Microsoft’s IP, June 16, 2010]. Wow, I know Apple and Microsoft are always battling in the technology industry but who would have forseen Microsoft’s legal department work  outsourced to India.

On June 14, 2010 i Bridge gets a feature: Demand for Legal Outsourcing Drives Growth at iBridge in Beaverton, which profiles the company based in Oregon which does electronic business solutions for various fields including the legal industry. As stated before, many in the legal field have already noted the impact of the unofficial permissibility for law firms to outsource discovery materials to India for document review. iBridge is that “middle-man” in this instance to get the documents uploaded.

To give you some insight on the day to day o perations: “The company’s growth is driven by the demand for outsourcing of legal industry support services such as early case assessment, information collection and management, hosting and document review. The iBridge team comprises of experienced project managers, technologists, seasoned in-house and contract attorneys admitted to the bar in the U.S. and India.”  See those key words: ‘project mangers’, ‘facility’; ‘contract attorneys.’ Facility, isn’t that a work synonymous with hospitals and manufacturing plants? Attorneys, as other bloggers have called out, are part of the McJob and WalMartization of the legal industry. Those who have survived on working with firms doing similar work, is it not obvious a new career path is needed?

I am actually not surprised at all. Someone informed me a few years ago a company who was doing exactly that where the contract attorneys are akin to the permanent staff of the vendor company thus eliminating the need for a law firm to actually hire attorneys themselves through placement agencies or junior level associates whose primary job was to perform document review. As evidenced by this statement: “This team is often called to supplement law firms and in-house counsel to aid in complex litigation and document review projects.” Talk about business model and changing operations and saving money, well so the argument goes: “The value the firm provides is in enhanced productivity and lowered costs in data heavy litigation.” Though this company is innovative in decreasing costs to law firms. Just imagine the founders of this company don’t have law degrees and likely little to no student loans…the legal industry will never be the same.