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First official blog poll results – a barbell result on bill write-offs

One week after this blog unveiled its first poll (See my post of Feb. 26, 2009: first blog poll.), I thank each of the dozen or so readers (as of yesterday) who took a moment or two to answer. The question was “If you reviewed bills submitted by law firms over the past six months, what do you estimate was your overall percentage reduction of the total billed amount?”

At mid-day on March 5rd, the 0-2% reduction showed 41%; 6-8 percent showed 8%; 9-11 showed 16; and 12+ percent showed 33%.

Those results, admittedly a tiny and self-selected population, are very hard to reconcile. One-third of the respondents average virtually no write offs on invoices, one third clobber the invoices to the tune of more than 12 percent. Personally, I put more faith in the former, where “we barely lay a glove on bills from our firms.” The lawyers who fall into that group will claim that they manage the firms efficiently in the first place, so the bills are what the bills are.