My Photo

My Favorite Blogs

Blog powered by Typepad

« What Happened to McGuire Woods Now? | Main | The Importance Of Time »


Traverse Legal

Patrick: Once again you have hit the nail on the head. I have always believed that the traditional hourly firms could use a good dose contingency work for their own professional benefit. It would help firms start thinking about efficiency, value and risk in ways that the hourly billing model simply doesn’t encourage. I have always handled civil litigation, both injury and commercial, on a contingency fee basis. The interesting thing about the commercial cases is that you can readily quantify economic loss. The lost profit component is often into the six or seven figure range.

Personal injury cases in that range are much more difficult to come by. The other interesting thing is that you are not stuck at a one third contingency rate in business litigation. There is a lot more flexible for sliding fee scales and the like.

I think the reason why the big hourly firms don’t do contingency fee work is because they are too comfortable and profitable with their hourly rate system. They are not looking for any risk. They are making a ton of money simply billing clients by the hour.

I would encourage commercial litigators who have worked strictly on a hourly fee basis to consider contingency fee work. It is enlightening, rewarding and offers potential return on investment way beyond the hourly billing system. The feeling of having your interests completely aligned with the clients is also professionally refreshing.

Enrico Schaefer, Traverse City Lawyer

The comments to this entry are closed.