手机APP下载

您现在的位置: 首页 > 英语听力 > 国外媒体资讯 > 经济学人双语版 > 经济学人综合 > 正文

经济学人:律师事务所 标价更高 收益更少

来源:经济学人 编辑:mike   VIP免费外教试听课 |  可可官方微信:ikekenet
 下载MP3到电脑  批量下载MP3和LRC到手机
加载中..

Business

商业报道
Law firms
律师事务所
Charging more, getting less
标价更高,收益更少
Lawyers' biggest customers are discovering that they can haggle
律师的最大客户们发现他们能与律师还价
THERE were groans in big companies' legal departments in the mid-2000s, when the fees of America's priciest lawyers first hit 1,000 an hour.
当美国最高的律师酬金达到每小时1000美元,20世纪中期,一些大公司的法律部门里开始抱怨连连。
Such rates have since become common at firms with prestige.
自此以后,这样的价格在名企变得普遍。

A survey published this week by the National Law Journal found that they now go as high as 1,800.

美国法律期刊刊登的一项调查表明,现在的律师费用已经高达1800美元/时,
But the general counsels of large businesses are increasingly finding that they can ignore these extravagant rates, and insist on big discounts.
但是那些为大公司效力的法律顾问却逐渐发现,他们忽视高额酬金,并坚持较大折扣。
Price-discounting tends to be associated more with used-car lots than with posh law firms. There was a time when a lawyer could submit his bill and be confident of receiving a cheque for the same amount.
价格折扣渐渐常见于二手车交易,并非光鲜的律师律师事务所。有一段时间,律师收到的支票跟账单数目一样,并且,他们引以为豪。
In banner years, some even got more, as grateful clients tipped them a little extra for a job well done.
在收益相当的那些年,一些慷慨的客户还会给点小费,来奖励他们的良好表现,因此有些律师能得到更多。
Since the financial crisis, however, the realisation of law firms—the proportion of their standard rates that they collect in practice—has been sliding.
然,自金融危机,律师律师事务所的个人实现,即他们在实际中累积到标准价格的部分在下滑。
Earlier this month Peer Monitor, a company that tracks the legal industry, said that the ratio in the United States dropped from 92% in 2007 to an all-time low of 83.5% in 2013.
本月初,一家跟踪报道法律产业的公司,Peer Monitor表示,在美国,价格比率已由07年的92%下滑到空前低值,13年的83.5%。
British lawyers have seen a similar decline.
英国律师界也有类似情况。
Discounts are rampant, says Brad Hildebrandt, a consultant to law firms.
折扣现象在蔓延。一家律师律师事务所的顾问Brad Hildebrandt如是说。
The economic forces driving high-flying legal eagles into the bargain bin are no mystery.
经济力量将这些高身段的律师界雄鹰打入廉价区,这已不再是秘密。
Demand for corporate legal work on such things as mergers, takeovers and share and bond issues plummeted in the 2008-09 recession, and has yet to recover.
在企业合并、收购、股票债券问题等的法律合作需求也在08-09年的经济衰退中减弱,至今没恢复。
Simultaneously, the easy profits once earned in litigation departments have also dried up: the tedious task of reviewing mountains of documents, which law firms used to farm out to battalions of newly qualified associates, can increasingly be done by computers.
同时,诉讼部的易得利润也枯竭了:枯燥的审核成堆文件工作,之前律师事务所都是承包给大批刚合格的伙伴,现也被电脑代替了。
Putting up prices at a time of weak demand and fierce competition seems perverse.
在需求小,竞争激烈的时候提高价格似乎有些悖于常理,
Yet the industry has continued to increase its sticker prices by 2-3% every year—only to give back almost all the gain by offering ever-greater discounts.
但是律师行业仍旧持续以每年2%-3%的速度提高标价—仅仅只是提供一个更好的折扣给顾客。
One reason for this is that, as ever more big clients discover they can haggle, law firms have realised that the best way for them to start the negotiation is with the highest possible asking-price.
原因之一在于,因为更多的客户发现他们能讨价还价,律师律师事务所意识到开始协商的最好办法就是给出最高索价。
In this, lawyers now find themselves in the same boat as accountants and other professionals who have long been used to having to bargain with bigger customers.
而如今,律师们发现他们跟会计以及其他职业的人一样,一直以来都在跟较大客户还价。
Another reason is that sophisticated legal services are somewhat like luxury cars and handbags, in that a high asking-price is taken as a sign of quality.
另一个原因是,错综复杂的法律服务体系有点像豪车和高端手提包一样,高价意味着高质。
No one wants to have hired the cheaper firm in a high-stakes lawsuit.
没人想在一个赌注高的诉讼中雇佣一个廉价律师事务所来为自己工作。
But perhaps the most important rationale for discounting is that it lets law firms charge different prices to different clients, depending on their willingness to pay.
但折扣最重要的理论基础是,它使得律师事务所根据不同的客户收取不一样的费用,当然,这取决于客户的意愿。
And even among business clients with big budgets, this varies markedly.
甚至是与预算高的商业客户,价格也明显不同。
Over the past 25 years some large companies have built up their in-house legal departments, so that these can now deal with outside law firms on an equal footing.
在过去的25年中,大公司自己内设了法律部门,像外面的律师事务所一样处理相关问题。
In-house lawyers know the market value of every type of service, and have sophisticated software that scrutinises invoices and queries anomalies.
内部律师了解每一种服务的市场价值,拥有完善的软件细查发票,质疑异常。
Such clients no longer just take the law firm's word for how many hours its lawyers spent on a job: if the bill looks padded, they will not hesitate to demand cuts.
这样的商业顾客,不再完全听信律师事务所在某一案子上花费的时长:如果账单看上去有水分,他们将毫不犹豫寻求折扣。
DuPont, a chemicals giant, has found plenty of scope for curbing its legal bills by becoming a cannier client.
化学巨头杜邦发现变身为一个精明的客户,能有许多减少法律账单的机会。
In the early 1990s it spread its legal work among 350 firms.
在20世纪90年代,杜邦将法律事务分配给350个律师事务所,
Now it uses only 38—including some smaller firms in smaller cities, which offer better value for money.
现在,只委托38个—包括一些较小城市的小公司,这些公司把金钱的价值用到实处。
DuPont has persuaded its remaining law firms to work together more closely.
杜邦劝导现有的律师事务所加强合作。
For routine work it insists on flat fees; for riskier cases it seeks no-win, no-fee agreements.
对于常规事务,坚持统一收费,对于有风险的事务,寻求没有胜利就没有酬薪的宗旨。
Above all, says Thomas Sager, DuPont's general counsel, We had to communicate that this is a new day, and you need to be as committed to our financial success as you are to yours.
特别是,杜邦的总顾问Thomas Sager说:我们不得不相互传达‘今天是新的一天,你必须坚定的为我们的经济成功努力,就如同你对自己的那样'的信息。
Law firms' profits would evaporate if they offered smaller and less sophisticated clients such attractive deals.
如果将很完美的方案提供给较小的,不那么精明的客户,律师事务所的利润可能会减少很多。
Fortunately for them, they have so far been able to get away with offering discreet, selective discounts.
幸运的是,目前为止,他们能够避免供应谨慎,选择性折扣。
There are still a few big clients around who do not realise what they are missing:
仍有少数大顾客没有意识到错过了什么:
If you increase the rate every year, some clients will make you take it back, but others will let you keep it, says Tony Williams, a former managing partner of Clifford Chance, one of Britain's biggest law firms.
如果每年都提高价格,一些顾客会让你收回该要求,但是另外一些会答应你的条件。高伟绅—英国最大律师事务所之一的总顾问Tony Williams如是说。
重点单词   查看全部解释    
grateful ['greitfəl]

想一想再看

adj. 感激的,感谢的

联想记忆
competition [kɔmpi'tiʃən]

想一想再看

n. 比赛,竞争,竞赛

 
tedious ['ti:diəs]

想一想再看

adj. 沉闷的,单调乏味的

联想记忆
negative ['negətiv]

想一想再看

adj. 否定的,负的,消极的
n. 底片,负

联想记忆
spread [spred]

想一想再看

v. 伸展,展开,传播,散布,铺开,涂撒
n.

 
quality ['kwɔliti]

想一想再看

n. 品质,特质,才能
adj. 高品质的

 
sophisticated [sə'fistikeitid]

想一想再看

adj. 诡辩的,久经世故的,精密的,老练的,尖端的

联想记忆
communicate [kə'mju:nikeit]

想一想再看

v. 交流,传达,沟通

联想记忆
mystery ['mistəri]

想一想再看

n. 神秘,秘密,奥秘,神秘的人或事物

 
corporate ['kɔ:pərit]

想一想再看

adj. 社团的,法人的,共同的,全体的

联想记忆

发布评论我来说2句

    英语学习专题

    • 英语听写训练
      听写强化训练系统有听写比对,按句停顿,中文翻译、听写错词提示等特色功能.
    • 经济学人中英双语版
      提供经济学人中英双语版文章、音频、中英字幕,类别包括文艺、人物、科技、商业等..
    • 可可英语微信:ikekenet
      关注可可英语官方微信,每天将会向大家推送短小精悍的英语学习资料..

    可可英语官方微信(微信号:ikekenet)

    每天向大家推送短小精悍的英语学习资料.

    添加方式1.扫描上方可可官方微信二维码。
    添加方式2.搜索微信号ikekenet添加即可。