The popularity of the role of Professional Support Lawyer (“PSL”) is growing amongst lawyers as it offers the possibility of a good “work/life” balance within the familiar environment of a law firm.
Although the position may vary from law firm to law firm, a PSL will usually be responsible for the “know-how” within the group/ department in which they work. Generally, this means the PSL having responsibilities for drafting and updating standard forms or templates, keeping abreast of new law or legal developments, and disseminating information by way of memos, briefings, training seminars and/or lectures to fee-earning colleagues.
A PSL is usually also used as a resource by fee-earners and will need to liaise with colleagues concerning queries that arise on matters and transactions. As such a PSL keeps up-to-date with front-line issues.
Although much of a PSL’s time is focused internally within the law firm in which they work, law firms increasingly recognise that the role of PSL can be harnessed for external business development purposes. This can result in involvement with client education initiatives and/or attending working groups for industry associations or bodies to discuss legal developments or their firm’s approach to new law or a particular regulatory environment.
As the role of PSL is still relatively new in many law firms, it can allow an interested individual the opportunity of moulding his or her bespoke career path within the organisation.