From Ethics to Regulation: The Re-Organization and Re-Professionalization of Large Law Firms in the 21st Century
38 Pages Posted: 19 Apr 2010 Last revised: 22 Nov 2015
Date Written: September 20, 2011
The recent history of the legal profession is presented as one where the re-regulation of the profession, as epitomized in the Legal Services Act 2007, has placed the large law firm at the centre as a site of regulation in its own right. The legal profession has redefined its professional character from that of autonomous producers to employed lawyers who now exercise discretion within tightly constrained corporate limits. This is paralleled by the move away from individualistic codes of conduct towards entity-based regulation.
This is Version 1 of this paper and has a different emphasis from Version 2 which also available at SSRN. It is for this reason I have left both versions on SSRN. This paper has been revised in September 2011 to take account of changes occurring in the UK legal services regulation.
Keywords: ethics, regulation, Legal Services Act, large law firms
JEL Classification: J44
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation