December 29, 2023
In today’s business world
the burden of consequences of non-compliance and litigation are protuberant
making it imperative for the business houses to adopt and adapt to the robust
legal, governance and compliance environment corroborating the role of General Counsel in safeguarding the interest of businesses and its promoters,
directors, key managerial personnels. However due to the limitations of cost
involved and limited experience in having an in-house General Counsel, many businesses
are considering adopting ingenious alternatives such as outsourcing the
services of General Counsel.
An In-house General
Counsel is a key member of an organization in a full-time role playing an
integral part of the management. The position of a General Counsel is not only
a costly affair in terms of company budget it is equally challenging to find
the right fit for the role. Also, considering the senior managerial position of
a General Counsel, he will usually need one or more legal aids in his team to execute
and handle the lower-level work, augmenting the overall human resource cost to
In contrast, an Outsourced
General Counsel is an expert having vast and comprehensive experience and
expertise, whose services are availed by the company and who is not in a full-time
employee role. The responsibilities of the Outsourced General Counsel are the
same as those of an in-house General Counsel but with fractional cost in comparison
to in-house General Counsel.
It is however,
interesting to note that not only the small and mid-level companies are
engaging the services of the Outsourced General Counsel to cater to their legal
requirements, nowadays even the larger companies who have a full-time In-house
General Counsel are engaging Outsourced General Counsel on retainer basis to
mitigate and transfer the associated risk.
Involving a General
Counsel at the inception of planning stage by companies is an agile way to get responses to their
legal needs and a high level of engagement for new business processes and
transactions to detect and mitigate the risks involved at the right time to
avoid hefty litigation and non-compliance cost, as the new version of the age
old idiom ‘a stich in time, saves nine’ is ‘planning and compliance in time
saves fine’. The role of the General Counsel is to provide practical and viable
opinions, legal risk management, transactional structuring, negotiating and
execution. With the plethora of benefits of having a General Counsel, the
downsides of having a full-time General Counsel involves the exorbitant cost to
the company and circumscription of experience and expertise hence not the most
efficient way to manage complex legal, compliance & governance risks.
This is where an Outsourced General Counsel becomes a much more efficient and effective option where the advantages of having a full time General Counsel remains without the corporates having to pay a fortune for a full-time in-house General Counsel.
In Conclusion, hiring a general counsel becomes crucial for all businesses to address their legal issues and disputes. Considering the key role, a general counsel plays, the company should ensure that they hire the right fit for the position, who has the potential to manage their tasks effectively. An Outsourced General Counsel firm has a diverse team of legal professionals, who assist businesses in their legal pursuits in the most efficient manner.
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