Lawyers and the Big 3

November 17, 2008
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There’s been a lot of talk lately in the news about the Big Three automakers – Chrysler, Ford, and General Motors – and how the companies are struggling in the current economy. The automakers are turning to Congress for possibly $25 billion from the bailout plan to help them attempt to weather this economic storm.

The fear is if even one of the car makers collapses, the repercussions will be felt throughout the country, including Indiana. Workers for the car company, suppliers, dealers, and other companies would be laid off; other companies tied to the automakers could also face closures.

Perhaps it’s because I work for a legal publication, but I immediately thought – what about the attorneys who work for these companies? There are several large firms in our state that deal with either the Big Three or companies that supply parts to automakers. Some firms work with car dealers; others with credit companies tied to the automakers or car auctions. What will happen to the general counsel for these companies who rely on the auto industry?

If Chrysler, Ford, and/or GM go under, how much of an impact will that have on our legal community? I don’t know how much of a firm’s business is tied to the auto industry, but will firms in Indiana have to make cuts to staff or practice groups if the auto makers file bankruptcy, go under, or merge to become one U.S. automaker? Any thoughts?
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