Relationship Management is Key to Cost Savings

April 30, 2009

images4Michael Ross, a consultant at Altman Weil, argues that relationship management is the key to cost savings for in-house counsel.  In order to achieve cost savings (which most in-house law departments are trying to do right now), in-house counsel need to foster good communication with outside counsel.

Ross notes that fee reductions alone may not produce necessary savings (i.e. because in the end, costs are determined not only by legal fees paid but also by outcomes; and good communication is essential in getting the “right” outcome). Read the rest of this entry »

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My Latest Overview of LPO

April 29, 2009

In The Complete Lawyer.  One spicy comment so far on TCL’s website.  Hoping for more!


Lawyers Rain on Cloud Computing

April 28, 2009

images3Take any promising entrepreneurial idea and you can surely find a group of lawyers who will tell you why it will never work.  That’s the nature of practicing law; identifying risk.  I would argue, however, that the best lawyers not only identify risk, but they talk about how to manage it.  After all, a nuclear bomb could land on your home tomorrow; but that doesn’t mean it makes sense to move underground.

With that in mind, I commend to you an interesting article on “cloud computing”. Read the rest of this entry »


Miscellaneous Thoughts on LPO

April 28, 2009

I read a post on Legally Yours yesterday that had some good information about LPO.  I’m not sure the article has a central theme, but I did find some interesting information that is worth reprinting.  So here it is. Read the rest of this entry »


Celebrate World Intellectual Property Day

April 27, 2009

Today is World Intellectual Property Day.  According to the blog Patent Baristas, the purpose of World IP Day is to:

  • to raise awareness of how patents, copyright, trademarks and designs impact on daily life;
  • to increase understanding of how protecting IP rights helps promote creativity and innovation;
  • to celebrate creativity, and the contribution made by creators and innovators to the development of societies across the globe;
  • to encourage respect for the IP rights of others

ipday_2009 The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) is celebrating the day by promoting green innovation.


How Consumers of Legal Services Can Get Buy-in for Cost Reduction

April 23, 2009

GC’s, Chief IP Counsel and other in-house lawyers who hire outside firms are in a bind.  While the message from above is “cut legal expenses without cutting quality”, every GC knows that hiring a less expensive firm and getting a bad result is not a good recipe for job tenure.

In the world of IP, the stakes are particularly high.  A strong portfolio of patents effectively limits entry into the marketplace.  A weak portfolio opens a company up to ruinous competition.

So how do GC’s and Chief Patent counsel talk to their superiors in a way that moves the ball forward?  Reading this open letter to GC’s is a good place to start.  In this letter, a consultant from Altman Weil provides some good tips on how to discuss cost savings with senior management.

What is not stated in the letter is that the same strategy can be employed in trying to get corporate buy-in for unbundling of legal services and using off shore providers.


Sacha Baron Cohen Suit Thrown Out-With a Little Help from Outsourcing

April 22, 2009

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Outsourcing legal work to India got some high profile recognition yesterday.  A libel suit filed against comedian Sacha Baron Cohen (for remarks he made as his character Ali G), was thrown out in Los Angeles Superior Court (link courtesy of AbovetheLaw).

As it turns out, a key to being able to litigate the case (rather than settling quickly to make the meritless claim go away) was finding a cost effective means of getting the work done. Read the rest of this entry »