Mitchell E. Kowalski

AVOIDING EXTINCTION: Reimagining Legal Services for the 21st Century

The past few years have seen incredible innovation and growth in the way legal services can be delivered--yet most law firms around the world continue to practice law the way it's been practiced for centuries, namely, as a labor-intensive endeavor carried out by high-priced lawyers billing by the hour.

Directly inspired by Richard Susskind's ground-breaking The End of Lawyers (Oxford Univ. Press 2008), Toronto lawyer Mitchell Kowalski now provides a vivid, believable account of everything a law firm could be.

In Avoiding Extinction: Reimagining Legal Services, you'll see how a typical big law firm fails to deliver real value to the client, resulting in dissatisfied clients and burned-out and stressed lawyers in the process. You'll discover the ways the firm can be redefined as a service corporation that is structured and managed in ways that truly deliver value to the client, profitability to the firm and career satisfaction to the lawyers. By the book's end, you will know how to apply these ideas to your own situation and enjoy the benefits.

Avoiding Extinction makes the case for how the law firm of the future will succeed, with a laser-like focus on delivering high-quality legal services better, faster, and cheaper. This entertaining and instructive book is a must-read for anyone seeking a creative vision into what a new, truly different law firm could look like.

What Others are Saying

"This is the most innovative law practice management book I've ever engaging novel about the lives of working lawyers with an illuminating treatise on how law firms must respond to extraordinary change in the legal marketplace. Avoiding Extinction is as entertaining as it is instructive, and it couldn't be more timely." ~ Jordan Furlong, Partner, Edge International

"Mitch Kowalski has translated his considerable understanding of tomorrow's legal profession into an original, provocative and entertaining narrative." ~ Professor Richard Susskind, author of The End of Lawyers?


The great legal reformation, New Zealand Law Society, September 2015

Video: The Great Legal Reformation with David Curle, director of Strategic Competitive Intelligence, Thomson Reuters, in conversation with Mitch Kowalski.

Diligent when hiring, National Magazine, November/December 2013

Firms still egocentric, not client centred, Lawyers Weekly, September 10, 2013

Lawyers next for tech-driven outsourcing, Brisbane Times, September 10, 2013

Law firms should plan for ‘digital disruption’, IT Wire, August 23, 2013

Growth of LPO in finance sector, BPM Watch, July 2, 2013

5 Ways Attorneys Can Better Compete With Nonlawyers, Law360, July 2013

McCarthy partners leave to launch Vancouver real estate boutique, Legal Feeds, the blog of Canadian Lawyer and Law Times, July 2013

Lateral Thinking, Canadian Lawyer, May 2013

The Solstice for Professional Services Firms, Beaton Capital, June 2013

Lateral Thinking, Canadian Lawyer, May 2013

Legal process outsourcing grows by leaps and bounds, Financial Post, April 17, 2013

The Changing Legal Profession: Anticipating the future, Gazette, Spring 2013, Law Society of Upper Canada

Can We Humanize Lawyers, or Are the Jokes Too Funny?, The Huffington Post

BigLaw's New Bosses Will Have Skills To Pay The Bills, Law360

Betrayed, beguiled, and abandoned?, Canadian Lawyer

Video from Mitch's presentation for Riverview Law (England) about the evolution of the legal market

Interview with Antony Smith of Legal Project Management

Downsides to reform, Law Times, January 14, 2013

Toronto lawyer promises to stir debate at University of Ottawa’s Feeney debate, Ottawa Citizen, January 8, 2013

Read the article and interview with Mitch Kowalski in Your ABA, the newsletter of the American Bar Association.

Video interview with Mitch on the Canadian Bar Association's National Magazine website.

Video of Toronto lawyers Garry J. Wise and Mitch Kowalski discussing the future of articling in Ontario, Canada.

Podcast interview on UK law blog Charon QC about Avoiding Extinction.

Podcast interview with UK business strategist Adrian Swinscoe about the future of the legal industry.