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Seemingly few and low discounts from firms in one study

We reviewed a slew of invoices for a law department, and found an overall discount rate of two percent, and most of that measly amount was due to one much-used firm that gave a ten percent discount. The sad story, we learned, was more complex.

Digging further, we discovered that some firms simply did not indicate on their bills that they were applying a discount, others wrote time off but did not treat that as a discount, and still others were billing on blended rates (with the implication being that the blended rate built in a discount – see my posts of July 30, and Aug. 21, 2005 on blended billing rates.)

One twist to add to this: if the law department regularly knocked something off bills, the discounts granted by the law firms, or none, would matter less.