Genre = Law
Many tasks can be done without the prerequisite of having a law degree from an ABA-accredited law school, passing a Bar examination, and being employed at a Bar lawyer firm. The problem is it is illegal for individuals to provide quality service for those tasks without having the three prerequisites. These three prerequisites are entry barriers which the authors would like to be reduced. The authors do think that individuals can obtain these credentials to signal their quality, but they are unnecessary in many cases where understanding law is required.
These entry barriers where put in place to prevent consumers from getting poor service. Rather then eliminate poor service, these barriers increased the income lawyers obtain as there is more demand for law while a very limited supply. The authors express that the increased salaries are not the result of doing higher quality work. Eliminating the entry barriers not only allows for consumers to judge the quality of legal services they obtain at the appropriate price that does not privilege wealth over justice, and forthcoming lawyers can practice law without just getting an academic experience.
This book has powerful ideas but they will resonate mostly with those who already see entry barriers as costly to social welfare. There is a huge reliance on statistics and explaining the statistics in granular detail, but a lack of explanation to many of the qualifiers. There is some history and building an understanding to the problem of entry barriers, but most reasoning is introduced without any forthcoming explaining to their importance. Those who are trained in economics will easily understand the issues.
Lawyers represent a very powerful interest group which can effectively lobby for policies which facilitate increased salaries but at a cost of society welfare. Entry barriers prevent high quality and appropriately priced services to compete with the interest group. Lawyers are important in society and some services would require a law degree, but the few small cases which require extensive training should not prevent the completion of the majority of tasks to be completed by those who do not have the degree.
Pages to read: 99
1st Edition: 2011
Ratings out of 5: