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The Wall Street Journal

Law Firms Face Fresh Backlash Over Fees

October 22, 2012 – “The changes represent a shift from the way many law firms are accustomed to doing business. ‘Ten to 15 years ago there were only a couple of corporations that took this seriously,’ says David Paige, a legal-fee consultant and managing director at Sterling Analytics Group LLC. ‘Legal bills were considered untouchable.’ Big law firms used to bill their clients for everything from word processing to photocopies and faxes—so-called soft costs firms incurred while doing client work. Those charges came on top of lawyers’ hourly rates.”

Dow Jones Daily Bankruptcy Review

N.Y. Mets Owners Call Madoff Trustee’s Fees Staggering (Page 7)
March 15, 2012 – “As the owners of the New York Mets continue to battle with the trustee recovering money for the victims of Bernard Madoff’s multibillion-dollar Ponzi scheme, another high-profile case in bankruptcy court under the auspices of the Securities Investor Protection Act is headed to extra innings after parent Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. emerged from Chapter 11 protection.” more>

Corporate Secretary Logo

Corporate Secretary
Five great ways to manage outside legal costs

July 11, 2011 – “In our experience, if such costs aren’t managed properly, they can inflate to anywhere between 20 and 40 percent over what they should have been. This is because most attorneys will not discipline themselves to follow billing practices to the same extent that they would if a corporation used recognized industry best practices.” more>

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Corporate Secretary
Ways to Lower Outside Counsel Costs

May 16, 2011 – “Monitoring outside counsel costs can seem like a drag, especially when the legal fees rack up over time, but it’s a crucial consideration – and the best way to manage the expenses is for the in-house lawyer to take a deep breath, step up to the plate and do so actively.” more>

Forbes logo

“Grazing,” Photocopying And Other Tricks Inflate Legal Bills

May 11, 2011 – “What Paige is really attacking is an entire business model, the big-firm practice of hiring armies of associates and paying them $50 an hour while charging the clients $250 or more. The latest Baker & Hostetler bill lists some 300 associates billing at rates as high as $557 an hour and more than 60 paralegals and clerks billing at an average of $250 an hour.” more>

Also, see the Gallery: Nine Ways Lawyers Inflate Their Legal Bills

Business Finance Logo

Business Finance
Are you paying for you law firm’s overhead?

April 27, 2011 – “Frequent buyers of legal services know full well that most law firms have sky-high profit margins. But what they don’t know is, despite those generous margins, many law firms continue to bill their clients for overhead costs including air conditioning and conference room use. In short, many clients are not only paying for legal advice, but also for running their lawyers’ firms.” more>

Westlaw News and Insight

Westlaw News and Insight
Madoff trustee seeks an additional $45 million in fees

April 19, 2011 – “David Paige, head of Sterling Analytics, a legal fees consultancy, questioned whether charges for things like online research and work done by people who are not attorneys, including photocopying, are excessive and possibly unethical. He also called for more transparency on how Picard’s team arrived at some of its costs.

“We really need to see the bills themselves, to have something real to look at,” Paige said.” more>

CNN Money

CNN Money
Madoff trustee wants $43 million more in pay

April 19, 2011 – “David Paige, chief executive and founder of Sterling Analytics, which analyzes legal fees, said there are “too many attorneys on the case, all with very high average hourly rates.”

Paige, an attorney who drew his information from summaries produced by the Securities and Exchange Commission, said the lawyers were being paid an average hourly rate of $549. He said the charges include $65,000 for online research, which is the highest he’s ever seen for one case, as well as $32,000 for copying and $10,000 for meals.” more>

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