His Honor Judge John Toulmin CMG QC FKC
Past President of the European Bar Council (CCBE), and Chairman of the European Law Academy (ERA) 1997-2010, now Honorary Chairman for Life
Mike Trotter may be the most well-informed and prescient current commentator on the economics and structure of organizations providing legal services to our nations' businesses. Declining Prospects pulls together a remarkable wealth of data on changes in large law firm economics and organization over recent decades and provides insightful analysis regarding the significance of these changes and the impact they may have on lawyers in and entering the profession. Whether his pessimism about the future of the highly-leveraged large commercial law firm is fully justified, only time will tell, but Trotter provides a factual basis for the intelligent reader to draw his or her own conclusions. For the young person considering law school and the possibility of a large-firm business law career, I cannot overstate the importance of reading and fully understanding Declining Prospects. As Trotter makes clear, the likelihood of a long-term high income career has declined while the costs of a legal education have escalated substantially. I believe every lawyer should give a copy of Declining Prospects to his favorite niece or young friend contemplating law school. I certainly will
John D. Hopkins
Retired Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Jefferson Pilot Corporation, former leader of the Corporate and M&A Practices of King & Spalding, and Partner, Taylor English Duma LLP
From the vantage point of a historian, economist and lawyer who personally has prospered from the phenomenal growth of the business of law, Declining Prospects author Mike Trotter tells us where the legal profession has been and where it's going. Not everyone will embrace the future he sees for lawyers, particularly the big law firms that have pushed partner profits to dizzying heights. While there's a bit of the scold in Trotter's analysis, he makes his best case for a changing business model for the profession when he falls back on his exhaustively detailed economic analysis of what happens when you have an increasing number of lawyers chasing a diminishing amount of work. For those contemplating their own future in the law, the message is clear: Enter the profession at your own risk and do it for the right reasons.
Editor in Chief/ Associate Publisher, The Daily Report, ALM