Hourly rates bounce back, but legal fees remain competitive as clients push for predictability. Vandana Chatlani reports


n the past 18 months, the world has learned to live with the chaos of covid-19. Omicron is the pandemic’s newest kid on the block, wreaking havoc among healthcare institutions, halting travel yet again, and forcing a bigger push towards vaccines and boosters.

Despite the difficulties, law firm have been surprisingly busy. Small businesses have rushed to obtain legal advice to deal with the financial and economic distress brought on by the pandemic. Companies swooped in to pick up distressed assets, worked to meet their contractual obligations, resolved disputes, created online marketplaces, signed vaccine purchase agreements, and much more.


“We have seen a spike in work since covid-19, which has made us a little overburdened, and if this trend continues … fees will rise for sure,” says Hitesh Soni, the founder and managing director of Hitesh Soni & Associates.

Shrikant Hathi, a partner at Brus Chambers, says the firm lowered its billing rates to less than half at the height of the covid-19 pandemic, however, since November, it had restructured its fees to “slightly more than our normal rates, and are more flexible and user-friendly”.

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