On November 19th the ABA Commission on Ethics 20/20 issued a memorandum identifying the “preliminary issues” it will consider. The memorandum makes clear that technology, globalization and multi-disciplinary practice have already changed the practice of law in parts of the world and that those changes will affect every lawyer in the U.S. The only questions are when, how and to what extent?
The commercial pressure for convenience, efficiency and lower cost ensure that lawyer regulation will change significantly. If lawyers in other parts of the world are permitted to provide services more conveniently, more efficiently and at lower cost, is there any doubt that lawyer regulation in the U.S. will have to change to permit U.S. lawyers to compete with (work with) their counterparts from around the world?