Legal Industry Roundup: 11/25-11/29



We hope you had a fantastic Thanksgiving and enjoyed your days off from work last week! Here’s what happened in the legal industry while you were away:

’Tis The Season For Holiday Parties

Is your company (or client) preparing to gather employees, vendors and friends for a holiday party? At the risk of being seen as a “Grinch,” there are legal precautions to consider. Among them:

  • Make it a “holiday” party — not a “Christmas” or “Hannukah” or “Kwanzaa” party. Be inclusive, and honor all religious faiths and spiritual traditions. (It’s the right thing to do — and there’s no holiday cheer in a discrimination lawsuit.)
  • If alcohol is not served, you can expect fewer “headaches” — both personally and legally. But if the holiday “cheer” will be flowing, be careful to restrict the amount served. Above all: Arrange designated drivers and cabs — and make sure they get used.

For more tips on legal preparations to keep your holiday party safe and trouble-free, seethis story at Lexology and this article at FindLaw.

Sources: | 5 Legal Dos and Don’ts for Your Holiday Party; and |All I want for Christmas is a lawsuit-free-holiday-party

How To Manage Legal Spending?

As 2013 draws to a close, GC concerns about legal bills remain in the spotlight. Although the trends increasingly indicate a “buyers market” for corporate legal services, it’s not just a matter of “pulling the plug” on outside counsel. GCs are becoming more strategic and innovative in choosing when to employ law firms — and with clearer understandings of expected results and costs.

One example: ITT Industries reduced its overall number of outside firms — consolidating the retained survivors into a “Preferred Provider Network.” Burt Fealing, GC and corporate secretary at ITT, reported that this focus on fewer outside firms had fostered stronger working relationships: “We now have closer ties with those firms, so that we can pick up the phone and talk to them at any time,” he said.

For additional examples of the guidelines and “decision use criteria” companies are employing to manage legal spending, read the full story at Corporate Counsel.

Source: | Taming The Legal Spending Behemoth

Best Practices For Holiday Cards

If your organization’s holiday card project is still in the planning stages, you might benefit from the list of best practices from the “Attorney At Work” site. (By the way, that blogpost cites an informal survey showing a strong preference for paper — not digital — holiday cards.)

Source: Attorney At Work Should Lawyers Send Paper or Digital Holiday Cards?

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