The UK Legal Services Market Report 2018, now in its eighth year, provides a market review of the UK legal services market.
- Annual UK legal services market revenue has bounced back in 2017 after a decline in 2016. Market growth was just under 4%.
- Law firm numbers have stabilised but many have reduced costs, and staffing, while some have dropped under-performing practice areas.
- Brexit uncertainties remain the key issue for the corporate sector but it is still performing relatively well. There has been modest growth in most consumer law sectors and the weakest markets are personal injury and criminal law.
- Forecasts are for a slight improvement in overall revenue growth in 2018, with stronger growth expected in 2019 and 2020.
- The second annual survey of legal practitioners working in consumer law shows that a clear majority are expecting revenue growth in the next 12 months.
The UK legal services market (including private practice firms, barristers, patent agents, and other legal services providers) was valued at an estimated 32.7bn in 2017 and this is an increase of 3.8% on the market value of 31.5bn in 2016.
The introduction of the Legal Services Act 2007 in 2011 started to change the market landscape. Seven years on, the number of law firms has not fallen significantly but many have reduced costs, and staffing, while some have dropped under-performing practice areas. This is a response to some new competition, and client demands for more flexible services and pricing.
Business models for law firms have changed over the last decade. By the end of 2017, incorporated companies accounted for 44% of all law firms and the traditional partnership model accounted for only 17% and is still falling.
This year's report includes the second annual set of results from a survey of 150 legal practitioners working in four consumer law areas: conveyancing; family law; personal injury; wills and probate. Over the last year, the majority of those working in consumer law have experienced volume growth in their practice areas. Overall, 58% experienced revenue growth. Looking ahead to the next 12 months, a clear majority are expecting to witness revenue growth in their practice area.
As in 2017, the personal injury market continues to be the consumer legal market facing the greatest pressure with further regulatory changes due in 2019 likely to take more work away from legal advisers. Most other consumer legal sectors will see some growth. Brexit uncertainty continues to be a concern for corporate law firms.
The revenue growth forecast for UK legal services market in 2018 shows a slight improvement on 2017. In 2019 and 2020, market growth is forecast to be even stronger with the total market value forecast to reach over 40bn by 2021. Corporate law will continue to drive market growth.
The report has sections for: industry overview; legal services timeline; market sizes and trends; market segments; key issues in the market; key players; primary research - practitioner survey; market forecasts from 2018 to 2021.
Key Topics Covered:
1. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
2. UK LEGAL MARKET TIMELINE
3. MARKET STRUCTURE
4. MARKET DEVELOPMENTS
5. THE KEY PLAYERS
6. MARKET SIZE AND TRENDS
7. MARKET SEGMENTATION
8. PRACTITIONER RESEARCH
9. PROFESSIONAL BODIES AND REGULATORY AUTHORITIES
For more information about this report visit https://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/wh9scf/uk_legal_services?w=4