The Lawyer Bubble

The 2016 trade paperback of my latest book, Harper-Lawyer Bubble PB(Basic Books/Perseus, 2016) — with an extensive new AFTERWORD — is available.

The Lawyer Bubble is an important book, carefully researched, cogently argued and compellingly written.  It demonstrates how two honorable callings – legal education and the practice of law – have become, far too often, unscrupulous rackets.”

—Scott Turow, author of Presumed Innocent and other novels

Forty-five thousand law students graduate each year with an average of more than $100,000 in debt. Upon graduation, only half will find jobs requiring a legal degree. Those lucky enough to land a job with a firm will find that an obsession with misguided short-term metrics has transformed a once-noble profession into just another business. They and their colleagues will face high rates of depression, and the majority will counsel their own protégés to choose a different career path.

In The Lawyer Bubble, lawyer and law professor Steven J. Harper investigates how the legal profession arrived at this crisis. He indicts the widespread fixation on rankings, the bottomless greed of equity partners, and the abdication of responsibility by law-industry leaders. In this meticulously researched and passionately argued book, Harper exposes the dirty secrets behind the legal profession’s malaise and explains what steps can be taken to repair the damage before it’s too late.

Available at: and Barnes & Noble