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In a survey co-sponsored by the Maryland State Bar Association, data provided by 393 Maryland attorneys showed the continuing significant impact of COVID-19 on the legal profession. The Maryland Lawyers Confidence Survey for Quarter 2 was conducted by The Daily Record May 25 to 29, 2020.

When the Quarter 1 survey was conducted from February 21 to March 6, 2020, 52% of respondents agreed that, overall, the economy was strong. In contrast, by late May, 85% of respondents disagreed with the assertion that, overall, the economy was strong. Also back in February, more attorneys were confident that they expected an increase in billable hours (38%), compared to those surveyed in May (25%).

The combined results demonstrate a marked decline in the confidence of attorneys since Quarter 1. The overall Maryland Lawyers Confidence Index score was -37, down from -3 in February. The Confidence Index declined in the following areas:

  • Our firm plans on hiring additional attorneys within the next three month
    • February 2020 Confidence Index                   -26
    • May 2020 Confidence Index                           -61
  • Our firm anticipates an increase in billable hours over the next three months
    • February 2020 Confidence Index                    11
    • May 2020 Confidence Index                           -20
  • Within the next three months, our firm plans to invest or expand in Marketing
    • February 2020 Confidence Index                   5
    • May 2020 Confidence Index                           -6
  • Within the next three months, our firm plans to invest or expand in Technology
    • February 2020 Confidence Index                    14
    • May 2020 Confidence Index                           0
  • Within the next three months, our firm plans to invest or expand in Support Staff
    • February 2020 Confidence Index                    -23
    • May 2020 Confidence Index                           -51
  • Within the next three months, our firm plans to invest or expand in Infrastructure
    • February 2020 Confidence Index                    -32
    • May 2020 Confidence Index                           -45
  • The overall state of the economy is good
    • February 2020 Confidence Index                   29
    • May 2020 Confidence Index                           -79