Things may finally be looking up for so many out-of-work lawyers. According to the recent job report, released last week by the Department of Labor, the legal services industry saw a substantial increase in jobs.

On Friday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released its jobs report for August. While the overall economy added 169,000 jobs, 2,700 of those were from the legal services sector. This jump is the second highest in the past year, yet it is still below the increase in jobs the sector was seeing prior to the start of the recession.

 Throughout the past 12 months, the legal services sector has added an average of only 500 jobs, so the 2,700 increase in jobs could be a sign the sector is opening up again. Last October, the sector added 1,000 jobs. In the past year, it has added a total of 6,300 jobs.

Some experts credit the good news with a turn for the better within our economy.

“It’s nice to see how a robust business environment leads to an increase in attorney employment, even in the ongoing face of artificial intelligence that is changing how and when legal services are used,” says Mike Evers, regular InsideCounsel columnist and president of Evers Legal Search.

In May 2007, however, the total number of jobs within the sector was 1,180,000. It’s still shy 50,000 jobs of that 10-year high.

Check out the full August jobs report.

And for more InsideCounsel news about jobs, see our most recent Careers slideshow: 7 noteworthy in-house career moves.