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Due diligence by law firms before they propose on future work

A large insurance company I assisted put out for bid its future portfolio of certain cases. The firms that were invited to propose were given an opportunity to come to the law department and look through the files of pending cases that were similar to those to be covered by their bid. The due diligence took place at the law department in several conference rooms, where file folders, docket sheets and the responsible attorneys were available for review and discussion. The point was to familiarize the firms with the likely makeup of the expected cases.

This was a sound practice. Even with non-litigation matters, it could improve the proposal terms and amounts if the law firms have a chance to get their hands dirty on comparable matters (See my post of Nov. 30, 2007 for ten other solid ideas for competitive bids.).