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IBA: Where the Legal Jobs Are: Litigation to Offer Greatest Opportunities in 2013

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Challenges Finding Top Talent Reported

Which specialty areas are predicted to yield the most prospects for legal job seekers in the year ahead? Almost one-quarter of lawyers recently interviewed by Robert Half Legal expect litigation will generate the greatest number of job opportunities in 2013. General business/commercial law and health care ranked an equal second, with each practice area receiving 19 percent of the response. Legal professionals with expertise in high-demand practice areas may have employers vying for their attention: More than half (57 percent) of survey respondents cited at least some challenge in finding legal talent.

“As law firms expand their teams to meet client requests and enhance service offerings, competition for highly skilled legal professionals is rising,” said Charles Volkert, executive director of Robert Half Legal. “Although the market for entry-level associates should remain conservative, lawyers with five-plus years of experience, solid business development skills and client contacts in the hottest practice areas will likely see lateral opportunities increase at small and midsize firms in 2013.”

Volkert noted that corporate legal departments also are seeking experienced lawyers and paralegals to handle more commercial transactions, litigation and employment-related matters in-house, and to contain outside counsel costs. “With a growing number of law firms and companies looking to hire from the same talent pool, many employers are bolstering their retention efforts to avoid losing valued staff members to other organizations,” said Volkert.•
 

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