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“We Can Normally Get an Answer from Other Firms with Just One Phone Call” (Bruce Heintz)

“ … as opposed to [our primary law firm’s] approach of having a meeting with six people just to debate the issue,” contended the General Counsel.

While this General Counsel is facetiously overstating the situation (or, maybe not), how can a law department ensure efficient delivery of advice as opposed to the legal group-grope described above?

Some ideas: (a) Tell the law firm that legal “answers” should in most cases be delivered by an individual attorney, even if prior consultation with others in the firm are appropriate; (b) Where cross-disciplinary considerations are required to solve a legal issue, ask the firm to provide attorneys who possess familiarly with both, or all, of the disciplines, e.g., know both contract law and the client’s industry; (c) Set a rule that no matter how many of the firm’s attorneys are in any meeting, a limit of only two will be paid for.

By guest author Bruce Heintz