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ACC Spring Symposium May 21, 2009 Litigating on a 2009 Budget. Prepared by: Mark Habbinga, Esq. Director of Discovery Solutions (O) 214 \– 470-9142 (C) 214-893-2220 Agenda. Introduction Corporate Counsel Survey

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Acc spring symposium may 21 2009 litigating on a 2009 budget

ACC Spring Symposium

May 21, 2009

Litigating on a 2009 Budget

Prepared by:

Mark Habbinga, Esq.

Director of Discovery Solutions

(O) 214 \– 470-9142

(C) 214-893-2220



Corporate Counsel Survey

Top Ten Corporate Counsel Strategies for Litigating on a 2009 Budget

Top Five Things Law Firms are doing to “Feel Your Pain”


Introduction your humble speaker
Introduction – Your Humble Speaker

Mark Habbinga, Esq.

Director of Discovery Solutions

Office: 214-470-9142

Cell: 214-893-2220

Introduction epiq systems
Introduction – Epiq Systems


Global Reach and Experience

Local eDiscovery experts and multilingual staff bring a consistent approach to multinational matters.

Public Company

Epiq Systems has been a publicly traded company

since 1997.

Full financial information is available at


Epiq is Safe Harbor certified and fully compliant with

the security requirements for ITAR data.

Introduction epiq systems1
Introduction – Epiq Systems

eDiscovery Solutions

Full Life Cycle Litigation and electronic discovery services & software – Collections, Forensics, Processing, Hosting, Review Services, Data Repositories

Corporate Restructuring Solutions

Chapter 11 case management, administration and consulting services

Bankruptcy Solutions

Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 case management software and solutions

Class Action and Claims Solutions Technology based solutions for class action and mass litigation case management services

Corporate counsel survey
Corporate Counsel Survey

Unofficial and Non Scientific Poll

25 Corporate Counsel Polled (20 GCs)

Dallas and Ft Worth

Industries include: Banking, Entertainment, Hotel, O&G, Outsourcing, Professional Services, Retail, Transportation

Department sizes ranging from 2 staff members to 300 members of legal team

Litigating on 2009 budget
Litigating on 2009 Budget

Standard Questions Asked:

Workload Increase? – 100%

Litigation Case Load Increase? – 50% (100% future)

Internal Department Budget Frozen/Cut? – 92%

Directed to Reduce Outside Counsel Budget? – 100%

Team Reductions? – 30%

Changes to OC Fee Arrangements? – 80%

Changes in OC? – 35% / 80% consider

Strategy 1 bring it in house
Strategy #1:Bring It In House

Keep More Legal Work In-House

Bleeding the Turnip / Whipping a Dying Horse

Headcount v. Outside Counsel Spend

Build a profit center + plus incentive program

Virtual Members of your In-house Team

Secondment (Law Firm Associates on a Term Basis)

Firm pays salary + company pays a bulk rate

Company pays salary only

First Pick of Larger Cases

Strategy 2 take the controls
Strategy #2: Take the Controls

More Management of the Litigation Process

Clear Guidance from the Outset

Set Performance Metrics

Ask for and monitor litigation budgets

Budget through Trial

Monthly and Annual budgeting

Litigation Phase budgeting

More Detailed Billing

Running and annual case totals

Break down every person billing

Limit number of attorneys / experience level

Strategy 3 pick your fights early case assessment
Strategy #3: Pick Your Fights – Early Case Assessment

Manage the business peoples unreal expectations

Determine in advance your Litigation Size thresholds

Risk Benefit Analysis for each case – what is your true exposure

Settle v. Blood in the Water Consideration

Standardize Pre-dispute DR / Offer Limited Discovery

Strategy 4 negotiate multiple lf rate options
Strategy #4:Negotiate Multiple LF Rate Options

Reduce Hourly Fees / Volume Discounts

Flat Fee (High Low Gamble)

Blended Rates (Easier to Budget, Seniority Issues)

Performance Based Options

Reduced Hourly plus Bonus

Hybrid – Reduced Hourly plus Contingency

Loss Leader Approach – Routine work for free

No Long term contracts / Competition /MFN Clauses

Strategy 5 re evaluate your firm relationships
Strategy #5:Re-Evaluate Your Firm Relationships

More Firms on the list

Competitive Bid Larger cases / Case Types in bulk

Boutiques and Smaller Firms

Multiple Firms per case (Lead and Discovery Counsel)

Secondment / Term Attorneys

Virtual In-house Attorneys

Strategy 6 drive the ediscovery process
Strategy #6: Drive the eDiscovery Process

Select a Full Life Cycle Partner (Economies of Scale)

Engage your Partner Early

Narrow Collections

Prioritize Your Discovery

Staged Discovery with eye on Settlement/MSJ

Use an Advanced Non-Linear Review Platform

50-73% Man Hour Savings

Tighter Timelines

Consider Document Review Services

50-75% Cheaper Per Hour

Elements of electronic discovery2
Elements of Electronic Discovery


Efficiency, Predictability

Risk, Cost, Volume

Strategy 7 require the use of technology
Strategy #7:Require The Use of Technology

Litigation Tracking Platforms

Automated Hold Processes

Advanced Review Platforms w/ Accelerators that reduce the man hours needed

Shared Data Repositories = Cost Sharing


More Teleconferences

Video Conferences in lieu of traveling

Strategy 8 re consider alternative dispute resolution
Strategy #8:Re-Consider Alternative Dispute Resolution

Be Involved in Negotiating Contract Terms

Mediate Early and Often

Consider Hybrid Models


High/Low Expedited Arbitration

Consider a Special Master

Discovery Master

Settlement Master

Special Trial Master

Strategy 9 perform post mortems every time
Strategy #9:Perform Post Mortems Every time

Root Cause Analysis

Examine Prelitigation Complaints

Reduced Litigation / Better Customer Services Scores

Review Budget v. Actual Total

Review Case Benchmarks and Goals

Engage OC to help with more training of employees

Brown Bag Lunches



Strategy 10 improve your network
Strategy #10:Improve Your Network

Build a Network of Trusted Colleagues

Same & Different Industries

Attend Corporate Counsel Organization Events

Association Of Corporate Counsel


DBA / FWBA Corporate Counsel Section

Texas Bar Association

Professional Networking Communities

Linked- In

Texas Bar Circle Connections


The view from the outside counsel
The View from the Outside (Counsel)

Proactively Talking to You

Offer Multiple Litigation Solutions

Offer and Use Outsourcing

Put the Counsel Back Into Legal Counselor

Complimentary Training / Brown Bag lunches

Neutral Assessments – Risk/Reward Analysis

Standing Update Calls

Absorbing Travel

Doing Routine Work for Free / Nominal Fee

Special thanks to
Special Thanks To:

Whitaker, Chalk, Swindle & Sawyer LLP


Mark Habbinga, Esq.

Director of Discovery Solutions

Office: 214-470-9142

Cell: 214-893-2220