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Litigation management in-house, case management for law firms

Think of the difference this way: The in-house lawyer surveys and manages the entire litigation portfolio; the law firm sees and manages only its own few cases. Litigation managers presuppose a sensitivity to business and reputational concerns, as well as the personal values of key executives; case managers usually wants to win at whatever cost and to prevail on the legal merits. A corollary is that the activities of inside lawyers and outside lawyer should differ significantly. With those differences should come differences in who is hired for which role and how they are motivated with incentives.

This distinction between litigation management and case management may be beyond obvious to most readers, but some of us may not have differentiated the two terms and their divergent perspectives (See my posts of Nov. 26, 2006 and Dec. 11, 2006 and the worth of a broad and precise vocabulary.).

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One response to “Litigation management in-house, case management for law firms”

  1. Patrick Lamb says:

    Rees, I have to take issue with you on one point. While it may be true that some outside lawyers (“case managers”) “want to win at whatever cost and prevail on the legal merits”, it is by no means always true. If a client exercises care in retaining counsel, he or she can find someone who understands that “winning at whatever cost” is generally antithetical to the client’s interests and instead focuses on obtaining a conclusion that advances the client’s business objectives.