Connecticut state Representative Pat Dillon introduced a bill (HB 5083) that would prevent companies from offshoring the drafting, reviewing or analyzing of legal documents to unlicensed workers overseas. According to Dillon, the bill is designed to insure that qualified people are conducting the document review, and to protect American jobs. The bill provides that unlicensed workers (i.e., those who have not been admitted to practice law in the state of Connecticut) who engage in the drafting, reviewing or analyzing of legal documents for clients in Connecticut could be charged with the offense of the “unauthorized practice of law.” Dillon is also considering adding a provision to the bill that would require disclosure of who provided the legal work and where it was done.
The Connecticut Law Tribune reported that the number of legal outsourcing firms in India grew to 140 by the end of 2009, employing about 24,000 people. Revenue was expected to reach $440 million in 2010 and surpass $1 billion in four years. In 2008, the ABA approved outsourcing legal work to lawyers and non-lawyers, if they adhere to ethics rules requiring competence, supervision, protection of confidential information, reasonable fees and not assisting unauthorized practice of law.