Law firms are dumping a significant amount of office space

By Patricia Kirk | National Real Estate Investor

The pandemic has boosted business at many law firms. But it also initiated a long-overdue correction to law firm operations, forcing a focus on efficiencies and the ongoing success of the firms, according to Sherry Cushman, vice chair of the legal sector advisory group with real estate services firm Cushman & Wakefield. That might spell trouble for office landlords.

In 2019, law firms accounted for 5.9 percent of all office leases signed in the U.S., according to real estate services firm CBRE. In markets like Manhattan, they ranked fifth from the top for the largest office leases signed that year, with 819,735 sq. ft. of space.

In the mist of the pandemic, the most notable operational change for law firms has been a reduction in office space in anticipation of attorneys continuing to work from home offices even after COVID-19 stops being a primary consideration.

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