What can a $700 per hour lawyer do that a $200 per hour lawyer can’t?
Yes. In important matters, $700 hour a lawyers are much cheaper than $200 an hour lawyers, at least, in the same firm and the same segments.
A $700 lawyer has done this 100 times before. A $700 partner can give you real advice — not just tell you what not to do. A $700 partner will generally make far fewer errors than a new lawyer at $200 an hour. A $700 partner has done this before so can do it 3x faster than a $200 an hour a lawyer.
In many cases, the real reason law firms have associates is the partners don’t want to do all the routine work, and/or have too much of it.