According to a recent article in the Fulton County Daily Report, growing dissatisfaction with the billable hour dominated a recent discussion between in-house counsel and lawyers from boutique firms.
As an experienced Atlanta injury lawyer and business litigator who has been an associate, partner and managing partner during my legal career, this comes as no surprise to me. Simply put, the size of a firm does not equate with the quality of legal work it performs and anyone who implies the opposite is misguided. While this is garnering headlines now as Corporate America attempts to tighten its belt, this is something that most legal insiders have come to realize some time ago. You see, the “big firm” business model is arcane and simply does not work in today’s competitive environment.
Most large Atlanta defense firms bill strictly on an hourly basis. While there is a lot of talk about changing, change comes slowly, if at all. Conversely, most smaller law firms who tend to represent injured Plaintiffs take most new cases on a contingency fee basis. In other words, the law firm’s fee is a percentage of the amount that is recovered for the client and if there is no recovery, there is no fee.
According to one panel member who was prominently featured in the recent article, “[many big law firms] hire 100 associates a year knowing that only two will make partner.” This is just one part of the big firm business model that leads to lawyer dissatisfaction, an emphasis on billing hours (as opposed to getting results) and inexperienced first and second-year associates performing a great deal of the client’s important legal work.
Whether you are looking for an experienced injury lawyer or business lawyer, your focus should be the same. Serious injuries and legal issues demand an experienced lawyer. Not only should that lawyer be there for you when you become a client, he or she should be the one who performs the majority of the legal work on your case. So, stop paying for all that marble and fancy paintings in the law firm lobbies, and hire yourself an experienced Atlanta injury lawyer or business lawyer who will give you the personal attention and expertise that your case requires.
Robert J. Fleming is an Atlanta, Georgia based attorney who concentrates his practice in dental malpractice, medical malpractice, serious personal injury and business litigation. Our firm is small by design. However, we have the proven track record and resources to handle any significant case. This allows us to practice law the old-fashioned way — as a profession, not a business.
We carefully screen all potential cases. Not only do we evaluate the facts of the case, we also want to know our potential client. In the end, we seek to only represent quality people who have worthy cases. This allows us to spend the time and resources necessary to make a difference in the quality of life for our clients. We have achieved record successes.
This is a simple formula; one that we are proud of and which we will always use. Each client is important to us. Each case is important to us. We are here to help.
We welcome the opportunity to help you evaluate your case. Please call (404) 923-7497 or contact us online today for a free, no obligation consultation.