Friday, December 23, 2005

Outsourced to India: lawyers

The December 17th issue of The Economist has an article ("The next wave") about projected growth in India's "Business Process Offshoring" (BPO) industry. While today two-thirds of the $250 billion of annual spending on legal services goes to the United States, 28% of the available global workforce with the requisite language and technical skills is in India. Since India's law is based on English common law, it is in a good position to take a large portion of that business from lawyers in the United States, with a 75% reduction in cost for the buyer. The Economist notes that this is "not just a question of 'paralegal' hack work such as document preparation' but includes 'drafting contracts and patent applications, research and negotiation.'"

Let's all weep a few tears for U.S. lawyers being put out of work.

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