CONTINGENCY PLAN – Law firms have been negotiating more fixed and contingency fee arrangements with their clients in the last year or so, firm leaders and consultants told Law.com’s Andrew Maloney, amid a desire for certainty amidst an unsteady economy, along with a pick-up in litigation and Big Law’s growing pricing acumen. Several law firm leaders said they’re getting more revenue from such fee arrangements, or that they’re at least ramping up their ability to put them together. Although the billable hour isn’t going away any time soon, and talk about creative pricing is still arguably much higher than its actual use, law firms are looking for and finding more ways to wring more profits out of more matters. The increasing sophistication of personnel and technology devoted to that endeavor is likely to make it more attractive to charge for value instead of time going forward, too.
ADMIT THE OBVIOUS – A proposal asks a federal judiciary rules committee to adopt a rule under which once an attorney is licensed in a state and admitted to one district court, they could practice in all 94 district courts. Supporters say the proposal will expand access to justice, lessen financial barriers to bringing litigation. Seems logical, no? But, as Law.com’s Avalon Zoppo reports, previous efforts to change federal district court bar admissions requirements for out-of-state lawyers have failed. Why? One theory is that keeping these rules in place also keeps many firms in the lucrative business of serving as local counsel to out-of-state lawyers. “It’s about trying to protect the local club,” said Daniel Shih, a partner at Susman Godfrey’s Seattle office who handles cases around the country and supports the proposal. “Creating these sorts of barriers really promotes the business of those local attorneys. [But] court policy should be not about protecting the business of local attorneys, but for providing access to justice.”
ON THE RADAR – Academy Securities, a veteran-owned and operated investment bank, was hit with a shareholder lawsuit Friday in Delaware Court of Chancery. The suit was filed by Potter Anderson & Corroon and Baker Botts on behalf of former business development director David Myers, who seeks to inspect the company’s books and records. The suit further contends that the company may have failed to provide the plaintiff notice of a shareholders meeting. Counsel have not yet appeared for the defendant. The case is 2023-0241, Myers v. Academy Securities Inc. Stay up on the latest deals and litigation with the new Law.com Radar.
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