Tag Archive: Cash Flow – Finances

Use of credit cards to pay legal fees and costs

The California Standing Committee on Professional Responsibility and Conduct has submitted for public comment its interim opinion No. 05-0009 concerning the use of credit cards for payment of earned legal fees, payment of unearned legal fees and costs and expenses.

My response to the proffered opinion follows:


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Silence can be very loud

Jack and Suzy Welch, one of their weekly columns for Business Week magazine, respond to the following question (paraphrased): “I’ve recently noticed that new MBAs are passing me by and moving into management in my company. I assume this is because they’re less expensive than experienced workers such as me. Do you see this as a trend?”

Their response was fascinating to me.

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Open letter to California Bar President

Editor, California Bar Journal
180 Howard Street
San Francisco, CA 94105-1639

December 20, 2006

Letter to the Editor
Letter to the President of the State Bar of California

In the current issue of the California Bar Journal, Sheldon Sloan, President, State Bar of California, starts his President’s column, stating: “As members of the State Bar Board of Governors, our most important duty – second only to public protection – is keeping watch over the hard-earned dollars you (lawyers of California) send us each year both in mandatory and voluntary donations.” (more…)

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Is Benchmarking the master or the servant?

Recently, I received a call from a lawyer wanting to know what percentage of his gross revenue should be allocated to rent, perhaps the number 2 or number 3 largest cost item for lawyers. He said he wanted to know whether his percentage was in line with other law firms.

My response didn’t satisfy him; he went to another consultant and was told the average was 12%. In a recent survey conducted by Juris, Inc., the percentage for occupancy cost was 9%.


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Delinquent Taxpayers – Beware

The State of California has a new tactic for encouraging payment of its sales and use taxes.

The Board of Equalization, the tax collecting authority for California, will make available as a matter of public record, each quarter, a list of the 250 largest sales and use tax delinquencies in excess of $100,000. There is an exception to the publication if there is a dispute connected with the tax assessment.

Sex offenders must publicly register; their whereabouts, therefore, are known to the general public. Forget about the concept that they’ve paid the price to society by serving time in jail; they forever more will be marked and tracked. Interesting that sales tax offenders may be treated in similar fashion.

Should we expand this idea to include income tax evaders?  Will this encourage timely payment?

Too bad we can’t do this with our delinquent clients who fail to pay our bills.  It’s unfortunate that the rule of confidentiality prevents us from publicizing laggard clients. Clever lawyers should be able to develop an alternative approach.  See my book for several ideas to help you collect your fees without difficulty in the future.

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Outsourcing – Offshoring

DuPont, if not the leader, certainly is getting most of the press about this hot issue.  In a recent Business Week (September 18, 2006) article, it was reported that DuPont has combined with OfficeTiger (with offices in the Philippines and India) to cut its legal expenses. (more…)

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Planners Make More Money

USA Today Snapshots (November 15, 2006) reports the results of a survey about companies that create a strategy for their future. 70% of those companies with a formal strategy in place report better performance than their competitors … compared with 27% of those companies without a formal strategy.

And an equally shocking result:  95% of the companies don’t tell their employees what that strategy is!  This latter statistic is confirmed by a Stephen Covey commentary. (more…)

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