Legal Services and the Emergence of a Service Economy: Practical and Theoretical Considerations

Perhaps the most difficult question facing legal professional associations is how to treat outsiders, particularly attorneys from foreign countries. The issue has become more acute as the growth of international trade and investment has led attorneys, following their clients, to attempt to establish themselves permanently in foreign legal jurisdictions. In fact, over the past three years the problem of transnational legal practice has, at least between the United States and Japan, become a trade issue in its own right. As U.S. lawyers attempt to tear down Japanese barriers against foreign legal “consultants,” foreign attorneys in the United States struggle against similar obstacles in the District of Columbia, Illinois, and California.