A minor billing issue I often come across is attorneys billing to do a conflicts check and also to work on clearing a conflict.
As all practicing attorneys who read this blog know (at least I hope they all know), attorneys have a mandatory ethical duty prior to taking on a new matter to make sure that no conflict of interest (COI) exists at the outset or during the course of the representation. It should be noted that this duty to check for COI must be done for all current and former clients not only of the attorney but also for all other attorneys in the firm. See ABA Model Rules of Prof. Conduct (RPC) 1.7, 1.9.
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