Hot Practice Areas of the Past 10 Years?

On my way in to work this morning, I overheard someone say "all these new 'hot' areas of law that weren't even around 10 years ago.' It was an existential moment that got me wondering what they were talking about, and then to what are the 'hot' areas of law that weren't even around ten years ago. So I did what I usually do with these type of issues, and crowd-sourced it out to the Twitterverse to see if anyone came up with suggestions of what is a 'hot' area of the law today that didn't exist in January of 2000. I thought I'd start the list off by suggesting a few things off the top of my head:
  • Green Energy Practice
  • Sub-Prime & Financial Crisis Practice
  • Electronic Discovery Practice
  • Guantanamo Bay Practice
Well... no good 'off-the-top-of-my-head' discussion goes without someone pointing out that I am wrong.... Immediately some smarty-pants Dallas lawyer and E-Discovery expert (who happens to know a lot more about this than I do) points out that E-Discovery was a 20th Century invention, and even points out that Texas ruled on ESI way back in 1999. Although, we eventually agreed that E-Discovery became "hot" in the last 10 years. My favorite comment was that although E-Discovery became 'hot' in the last 10 years, here's wishing that it wouldn't exist in 10 more years!
My co-blogger Lisa came up with a crazy thought that 'virtual law' needs to be created and become a 'hot' practice area, but that 'virtually' no one is listening to her... 'literally'.
I thought that maybe "Gay Marriage" issues will become a 'hot' area, especially when it comes divorce time. And, it was suggested that 'e-commerce' law has also become a 'hot' legal practice area in the past 10 years (although it was also a 20th century invention along with e-discovery.)
What have I missed? Any other 'hot' legal practice areas that have sprung up in the past decade? (Yes, you have now become my 'crowd-sourcing' experiment!)

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Anonymous said...

I realize that this is not an answer to your question, but simply another question. What are the hot practice areas for the virtual practice in the next 10 years? I have been practicing for twenty years in a real estate and creditor's rights practice. Things are changing rapidly with more and more of my lender clients doing the work in house. I'm ready to jump on the virtual train and reduce my staff/overhead. I have been looking into DirectLaw.com and VLOtech but don't know what type of practice will thrive with either one. Any suggestions?


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