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Two fixed-fee offerings: due diligence for M&A and insurance administrative hearings

Saul Ewing, a Philadelphia-based firm, launched its “cost certainty commitment” in June 2009. Many law firms have agreed to work on various types of matters for a fixed fee, but I cite this particular one because of the publicity surrounding it and because of its specificity. A partner describes the firm’s first two “packaged alternative fee arrangements” in Legal Strat. Rev., Summer 2009 at 7.

Saul Ewing started with (1) “due diligence work for potential mergers and acquisitions” as well as (2) “administrative hearings before the Pennsylvania Insurance Department.” Research by the firm had shown that the firm handles many matters like these, the hours required were fairly predictable, the services could be described and systematized, and there was sufficient market demand.

To complement what this one firm has done, general counsel need to push more of their firms to establish flat rate work – accurately described and based on data analysis research – and then to publicize the initiative (See my post of March 1, 2008: fixed or flat fees with 36 references.).