Transitioning General Counsel - What to do When Your Legal Advisor Moves On

Updated: Apr 2

The greatest difference between General Counsel and traditional Outside Counsel is that the former knows the organization inside and out. The intimate knowledge and understanding that the In-House or General Counsel (GC) has about the business, its operations, it's people, and it's culture, is what makes it so hard when they move on to a new role. What's worse, the longer they've held the position, the harder it is to replace them.


When this happens, organizations often use the 'two weeks' notice' to try to document everything the GC knows and does (good luck!), and cram in a replacement as quickly as possible. This is a setup for long-term disaster in a prominent and influential position.


Fortunately, Out-House Attorneys offers a better (and affordable) alternative. Out-House Attorneys offers fractional legal services - including fractional general counsel. Upon learning that your GC is leaving, we can immediately assign an attorney to work with the organization and begin a transition process. They can even team up with the departing GC before they leave.


By the time the GC has moved on, the assigned Out-House Attorney is ready to operate in their place - even if no hand-off was possible. This gives the organization time to identify, vet, and onboard a suitable replacement. The assigned Out-House Attorney can even assist with the recruiting and onboarding efforts, all while updating the organization with industry best practices.


The benefits of using Out-House Attorneys as transitional General Counsel are obvious:

  • Avoiding a 'gap' in competent legal representation

  • No pressure to rush to fill the departing GC's position

  • Your HR team enjoys professional help with identifying and onboarding a suitable replacement

  • Out-House Attorneys are significantly less expensive than traditional outside counsel

  • The organization can continue to rely on its Out-House Attorney for as long as is needed - even indefinitely (it happens!)

If you are a General Counsel about to move to a new role, proposing Out-House Attorneys as a transitional solution can also help to lessen the blow of your departure and help to maintain a great relationship with your (soon-to-be former) employer.


If your General Counsel has just given notice of their departure - don't panic! Just contact Out-House Attorneys. With attorneys experienced in Government Contracting, Healthcare, Biopharma, Professional Services, Commercial Real Estate, Data Security, and nationwide Regulatory Compliance, we're immediately available to help!


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