Cost of keeping clients


This issue features our annual report on Chinese law firms’ legal services fees. As the economy is under pressure and slowing, the legal departments of many enterprises are keeping a closer eye on their budget control, resulting in fierce competition within the legal services market. Some law firms have therefore reduced their service prices to win clients. Some firms, however, believe low-price competition is harmful. They tend to help clients control budgets by more flexible billing methods, and are winning premium clients by improving their own strengths. You can find their billing strategies in our Survey of Chinese law firms’ billing rates in 2019. A table of law firms’ billing rates is also included in the report.

Another article focuses on Hangzhou, a historical city among eight ancient capitals of China. It has been developing fast with an internet industry in recent years, and has nurtured a number of high-tech companies, including Alibaba. And yet, while the city itself has embraced technological change for its infrastructure and planning, the legal community may have been slower to do so.

Hangzhou Internet Court, the first internet court in the world, as well as the Hangzhou Internet Court of Arbitration, now form an essential part of Hangzhou’s Online Dispute Resolution Mechanism platform to facilitate both users and lawyers, yet some remain resistant to these dramatic online reforms.

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