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October 18, 2011 2:36 PM

Business Litigation Costs Up, But Volume Down, Fulbright Survey Finds

Posted by Ross Todd

Lawsuits against U.S. and U.K. businesses fell in a recent 12-month period but litigation costs rose, according to a survey of company lawyers by Fulbright & Jaworski

Respondents to the 2011 Fulbright & Jaworski Litigation Trends Survey don't expect the slight drop in litigation volume to continue—92 percent predict litigation levels to remain the same or increase in the next 12 months.

Despite the drop in volume, median spending on litigation rose to $1.4 million from mid-2010 to mid-2011, compared with $1 million in costs for the same period a year earlier, the survey of 405 in-house lawyers found. Almost three-quarters of the respondents identified themselves as either general counsel or heads of litigation.

The survey also found the number of regulatory actions is climbing, with 46 percent of all respondents saying they retained outside counsel in connection with regulatory proceedings up from 37 percent in last year's survey.

For more on the Fulbright survey, read American Businesses Becoming Less Litigious on The Am Law Daily's sibling publication The Blog of the Legal Times.

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