Wolters Kluwer: Megamatters Move the Needle

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Matters with over $1m US spend are bellweathers for the financial direction of corporate legal departments in almost 90% of the time, with most legal departments leaving money on the table by ignoring common community practices to reign in spending according to a recent report published by Wolters Kluwer.

There is always low-hanging fruit in every type of legal matter, and the scope of these matters means that the simple effort of picking the low-hanging fruit from a single matter could save millions.


Nathan Cemenska, Director of Legal Operations and Industry Insights for Wolters Kluwer ELM Solutions.

Those matters over $1m or “Megamatters” arise with litigation categories like mass tort, class action, like mergers and acquisitions, and regulation from agencies like the SEC.

ELM Solutions, a division of Wolters Kluwer, is producing an ongoing series of LegalVIEW reports, Insights blogs, webinars and other content discussing the emerging trends from the LegalVIEW Data Warehouse, containing billing detail totally over $150 billion.

Some of the counter-intuitive insights around megamatters in their third report include:

  • Alternative Legal Service Providers (ALSP’s) have penetrated less than 3% of megamatters.
  • If annual megamatter spend rises or falls by even $1 USD, there is an 89 percent chance that the direction of total outside counsel spend will follow accordingly.
  • Three megamatter types – litigation, corporate and securities, and mergers and acquisitions (M&A) together represent almost 40 percent of corporate legal spend.┬á
  • Firms outside of the AmLaw 200 with lower rate structures account for about 28 percent of megamatter spend, much less than the 40.3 percent of spend they capture in matters accruing less than $1 million USD in lifetime cost

The report, containing many suggestions for reducing spend, can be accessed here.


Mary Mack

Mary Mack is the CEO and Chief Legal Technologist for EDRM. Mary was the co-editor of the Thomson Reuters West Treatise, eDiscovery for Corporate Counsel for 10 years and the co-author of A Process of Illumination: the Practical Guide to Electronic Discovery. She holds the CISSP among her certifications.