Law firms are still interested in merging and combining with other firms, but the activity that makes those mergers happen—the exploratory talks, the face-to-face meetings, the negotiations—appears to have ground to a halt due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Altman Weil principal Tom Clay estimated that, in a given two-week period, he’ll field 20 different calls from law firm partners who are interested in doing a merger. In the past two weeks, he’s only had two phone calls. Lisa Smith, a principal at Fairfax Associates, has seen her own drop-off in law firm merger activity in the wake of the coronavirus.

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