On Controlling Independent Counsel’s Overstaffing

“Participation by too many lawyers is another form of over lawyering that can result in a violation of Rule 1.5(a).”  ABA Annotated Model Rules of Prof. Conduct (7th ed. 2011).

Experience in working with independent counsel for over two decades has taught me that many too often think that they have been given a blank check to defend the insured. Thus, many independent counsel firms think that they can with impunity have as many attorneys as they want work on a case.  As a result, over staffing a case is one of the most common issues I encounter when reviewing independent counsel legal bills.

How to determine what is appropriate staffing for a case or when is it appropriate to add staff to a case are issues I cover in my seminar How to Review Legal Bills Like a Pro©. But for now, the main thing to keep in mind is that independent counsel’s duties with regard to staffing a case are no different that than those of non-independent counsel.

[For a complete copy of this post, please contact clientservices@legalbillaudit.com.]

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