As the FT has noted this morning:
According to an analysis of the sector by The Lawyer magazine, the top 200 UK firms increased overall revenue by 73 per cent between 2007 and 2017, from £13.5bn to £23.5bn. Over the same period, the total number of lawyers – partners and associates – working for those 200 firms rose by 44 per cent, from 44,133 to 63,548. Of those, the number of partners went up by about 6,000 to reach 19,736.
As I often say to my students, if GDP was a measure of wellbeing then we should all get divorced because I can think of little that could boost GDP by so much in so short a space of time. Lawyers would, of course, be a major beneficiary.
But GDP is not a measure of wellbeing, and money spent on lawyers is certainly not a good indicator of happiness. In fact, I'd be so bold as to say that in a great many cases it is the exact opposite.
Maybe this report is simply a good indicator of our legal unhappiness. If it is, things aren't looking good on that front.