Tag Archive: Thoughts

Lawyers core competency – Must we specialize or be incompetent?

In a recent Los Angeles Times article, the headline read “Double-O: Better for Obama than Oprah.” The writers of the article cite a study by a Fordham University political science professor. He concluded that her popularity went from 74% before the endorsement to 56% and is currently at 46%. He suggests that Oprah’s endorsement for Obama was far more costly to her than might have been imagined. (more…)

View page

Cash flow of lawyers is impacted by insurance proposal

Mike McKee, a reporter for the San Francisco Recorder once again underscores the hostility that California lawyers have against the current malpractice insurance disclosure proposal.

Still, the question I asked earlier in this series has yet to be answered by the Board of Governors! Why is it that shareholders of law professional corporations do not have to disclose that they do not have malpractice insurance? Or, at least meaningful malpractice insurance?  All they need to do is sign a piece of paper saying that they will be responsible for the first $50,000 of a malpractice judgment. There is no financial statement required, no verification of financial ability and no insurance policy required under the current rules; nor is there any such requirement under the new proposed rule!

And why is this fair in the minds of the Governors supporting this proposal?

View page

Is the billable hour a trap? A contrarian perspective.

In Law Firm Fees & Compensation: A LawBiz® Special Report, I discuss several formats for billing legal services. Jeff Bleich, President of the State Bar of California, discusses one of these formats, the billable hour in his April column of the California Bar Journal.  He raises the specter of the “billable hour trap.” He maintains that the profession must change its fee structure and move away from the current policy of billing by time. He reflects the thinking of many lawyers who are feeling the pressure of working long hours.

Because of his comments, I began to think about this subject in a way different than I have ever done in the past. I want to share some of my revelations as, perhaps, a catalyst for your further consideration on what clearly is a very important issue.

View page

Solo lawyers and malpractice insurance debate

Sole and small firm practitioners have more at stake than insurance in the current debate at the California Board of Governors over mandatory disclosure of malpractice insurance coverage, much more! Their very existence is threatened. Perhaps that is an overstatement. What is clear, though, is that the economic well-being of this group, and the very survival of many individuals in this group, is being threatened.  (more…)

View page