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Most innovative law firms 2016: Innovation in new models

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StandoutClientEarth2910109Established nine years ago by US environmental lawyer James Thornton, ClientEarth is Europe’s first law firm set up to defend the public interest in the environment. Formed as a charity and independently funded, it now has 100 staff, who use the law as a strategic tool to protect the environment and human health. Focusing on different areas such as biodiversity, forestry, company and financial law, the firm aims to change legislation and policies and influence how businesses report their impact on climate. An important part of the firm’s work includes making sure that environmental laws are implemented in the spirit of how they were written.
StandoutD2 Legal Technology289109One of the first consulting firms to combine technology and the law to digitise legal documents for major financial institutions.
StandoutASB Law26998The firm reorganised itself away from legal practice areas into sales and delivery teams where success is measured by client satisfaction rather than fees and hours.
StandoutFulcrum Chambers26998A senior, multidisciplinary team of barristers, investigators and lawyers set up to work with clients on bribery and corruption issues.
StandoutKennedy Van der Laan25988The Netherlands-based firm has created an online platform through which all work and communications are conducted for its network of member firms in 22 jurisdictions so that its client Nike experiences them as a single law firm.
Highly commendedCapital Law24897The first UK law firm to set up its own fund, worth £50m, to support commercial litigation cases for smaller claimants.
Highly commendedThree Crowns23887Set up as an alternative to big law firms, this unique international arbitration boutique now has 40 solicitors and barristers.
Highly commendedAxiom22787The next step in the firm’s flexible resourcing model enables general counsel to completely outsource their unpredictable staffing requirements.
Highly commendedKindleworth22778A supporter of many new-model legal businesses, Kindleworth enables start-ups by removing their management costs.
Highly commendedSynch Advokat22886With no partnership structure, the firm shifts employees’ focus from profits to customer service for its tech start-up clients.
CommendedGateley21876In the year since it became the first UK law firm to list on Aim it has increased revenues and profits.
CommendedHausfeld21786The firm has taken the litigation finance model to Germany, to turn company in-house legal departments into profit centres.
CommendedMcGuireWoods21876The firm set up Green Lane, a network of eight law firms in Europe, and is the first to be able to give integrated, cross-border EU customs and trade legal advice.
CommendedPwC Tax & Legal Services21687A multidisciplinary team that offers legal, tax, property and financial services to wealthy clients.
CommendedThe Legal Director21777For a monthly fixed fee, the company provides generalist lawyers to small and medium-sized businesses which cannot afford to hire staff lawyers.
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