Law firms, particularly midsize and smaller players, continued to face a challenging revenue picture during the last year, our latest survey of firm finances shows. But they appear to have done a better job of managing expenses to keep profitability and partner compensation high.

The Survey of Law Firm Economics, a joint project of The National Law Journal and ALM Legal Intelligence, shows that revenue per lawyer (RPL), a key indicator of overall firm health, was down on average among the nearly 200 firms surveyed. In fact, the 4.2 percent decline in RPL was the biggest since we began tracking the metric in 1985.

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