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The Virtual Law Department

What will the law department of the future look like? Will the traditional law department with offices at the company's site disappear in favor of virtual teams scattered in locations all over the world and connected electronically? Will we use temporary or part-time lawyers, experts, or support staff on an an as-needed basis and save the overhead associated with additional full-time employees and offices?

While some departments may be moving in these directions, they probably won't become major trends for some time. There is still no substitute for developing relationships through presence in the office and face-to-face communication. This is especially true for in-house counsel, whose effectiveness often depends on those relationships we have with our business-people/clients. 

Nevertheless, there are times when we can't be there. Our employers may have operations all over the world, and lawyers can't always be physically present wherever and whenever they may be needed. In addition, more and more, people want to work from home or other locations at least on occasion. Other times a physical meeting just isn't practical given the timing and locations of the people involved. 

A practice management system that allows users access through the Internet is one step in connecting virtual team members and out-of-the-office employees with the tools and information they need. Virtual meetings are another way. Here are some resources for setting up virtual meetings and virtual teams




Last updated: 06/07/01


Copyright 2001-2005 David A. Munn