In-House Straight

, Corporate Counsel, @MarlisseSS

Billable Hours: A Sign You're Not the Firm's Priority


Is your company an outside counsel's top priority? Look no further than the firm's billing structure.

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What's being said

  • Caroline Schroder, Sulgrave Strategies LLC

    The bill padding we are seeing is nothing new as a contagion confronting the corporate General Counsel and CFOs, but the new layers added through discovery and other outsourcing and off-siting mechanisms make the severity less transparent. We don‘t advise on these issues, but for 30 years we have seen up close what is going on. Every time a hand touches a file, the bill is ratcheted up. Teams can sit idle for weeks and months while the bill continues to rise. General Counsel have to get their own people engaged and visiting on-site and questioning billing much earlier than upon receipt of the bill. Being aggressive on demanding write-downs and write-offs and threats to switch counsel only get General Counsel and their budgets so far. Fixed fees can build in fluff. General Counsel and CFOs have to get inside the billing as it is happening.

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