On August 5, 2008, in Formal Opinion 08-451, the American Bar Association sanctioned US lawyers sending work overseas to save money for their clients. http://www.abanet.org/cpr/08-451.pdf
Our global economy makes this a no-brainer; but there are obvious prerequisites:
1. The outsource has the “legal knowledge, skill, thoroughness and preparation reasonably necessary.”
2. The client consents in writing, with a knowing acceptance of the risk of breach of attorney-client confidence.
3. Outsource work is properly supervised by US counsel, including appropriate protection of client secrets.
4A. The US lawyer checks background and references.
4B. The outsource legal education is comparable to a US legal education.
5. The outsource signs a confidentiality agreement. And,
6. The fee remains reasonable after including any US surcharge for overhead.
Legal outsourcing is huge, especially between the US and India, and particularly in document-intensive cases. Now the procedure has the official sanction it deserves.