As America has become a more litigious country, protecting intellectual property has become a more profitable business. So what does that mean? It means the big guys, the large companies, are taking notice of this lucrative field and they are moving their way in, leaving less work for the smaller lawyers. The New York Times states:
Last year, the 50 largest firms had 61 percent of the specialized litigation work, up from the 36 percent in 2011, according to an analysis released on Tuesday by Lexis/Nexis CounselLink, which processes legal invoices. The share of intellectual property business at smaller firms dropped, with legal work at firms employing 201 to 500 lawyers falling to a 13 percent market share last year, from 35 percent four years ago.
These heavyweight firms are outflanking their smaller rivals by being more flexible in billing, and allowing junior partners, who usually command a much smaller salary than senior partners, to take on the cases. However, this does not mean there is not a lot of work for the little guy, especially if he is talented. As a matter of fact, corporations are looking to lawyers more than ever to protect their intellectual property. There really is a belief in the business community that a good intellectual property lawyer can be the difference between success or failure in a case. Losing a case is bad for the brand, and intellectual property is so integral to marketing. Building a network as a solo lawyer is pretty lucrative right now if you can market yourself as a company that can tackle IP.
Choosing a niche is a good way to get more business. Besides IP, you can specialize in other types of law such as healthcare or auto accidents, which are very popular these days.
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