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Alternative Fee Arrangements that Don't Run Afoul of the Ethical Rules

(4978 Ratings)

Produced on: July 16, 2014

Course Format On Demand Audio

Taught by

Categories:

Course Description

Time 61 minutes
Difficulty Beginner

Time and time again, law firms choose traditional billing models to exchange their knowledge for compensation. But, as the economic climate changes and technology advances, there will be diminishing tolerance for increasing hourly rates or even blended rates that attempt to lower the overall costs of service. In some instances, attorneys may simply not want to change because the traditional, hourly billing model has worked for them and they perceive that it will continue to do so despite changing tides. In other instances, attorneys may hesitate to alter from the traditional model in fear that doing so may cause them to break an ethical rule.

 

Join attorneys Rania Sedhom and Melissa Mayhew of Sedhom & Mayhew, PLLC (A Bespoke Law FirmTM) as they illustrate the benefits of alternative fee arrangements (AFAs), ethical considerations in creating AFAs, and highlights from some successful alternative client relationships. The presentation explores the ever-increasing popularity of a still under-utilized approach to the practice of law. Learn how to create an AFA without running afoul of the ABA’s ethical rules.  Distinctions or parallels (as applicable) from New York and California are also explored.

 

Learning Objectives:

I.    Grasp legal and business framework for sustainable and profitable AFAs 

II.   Know the ABA rules that govern alternative fee arrangements

III.  Distinguish and draw parallels for New York and California ethical rules

IV.  Know the most important ingredients to ethical alternative billing arrangements

V.   Apply alternative fee arrangements through real world examples of success (and failures)

 

Program Attorney: Sigalle Barness

Faculty

Rania V. Sedhom

Sedhom Law Group, PLLC

Rania V. Sedhom, Managing Partner of the firm, is an attorney who provides practical and efficient solutions to complex problems. Rania has extraordinary interpersonal skills that allow her to forge win-win relationships across diverse organizations and cross-functional stakeholders. She is also a skilled legal and business commentator with appearances on national print and TV media, including L.A. Times, the Chicago Tribune, the Baltimore Sun, Forbes, Inc., Business Week, and CNN Money. 

 Rania is admitted to the Bars of the State of New York and New Jersey, the Eastern District of New York, the Southern District of New York, the District of New Jersey and the Third Circuit. Rania attended Syracuse University College of Law, where she was Editor of The Labor Lawyer and The Digest and served as Vice-Justice of the Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity. Prior to law school, Rania attended Columbia University where she majored in political science.

Melissa C. Mayhew

Sedhom & Mayhew, PLLC

Melissa C. Mayhew, Partner in Charge, CA office, is an attorney who works with her clients to resolve their legal issues in a manner that not only serves her client’s legal interests, but their bottom lines. She has a background in consulting and brings a practical approach to problem-solving.

 

Melissa is admitted to the Bar of the State of California and holds a PHR certification from the HR Certification Institute.  Melissa attended the Dickinson School of Law of the Pennsylvania State University. Prior to law school, Melissa attended the Pennsylvania State University where she majored in international politics.

 

Melissa currently resides in Alameda with her family.

Reviews

JR
Joanna R.

Great course

CL
Carrie L.

I would recommend to associate level attorney.

KN
Ken N.

Excellent advice, I really liked the presentation, it gave me some ideas on how to manage my practice better.

KG
Kenneth G.

Interesting and timely presentation

BP
Brian P.

Very interesting topic and excellent and lively presentation

IS
Ivy S.

THESE LADIES WERE TWO OF THE BEST COMMUNICATORS I HAVE HEARD IN ANY CLE COURSE.

LB
Louise B.

very infotmative

JC
James C.

Very effective introduced to alternative energy fee arrangements; good use of examples.

MB
Michael B.

good course

MM
Melanie M.

Great ways to give clients a better value and maintain a more consistent income stream.

RM
Retha M.

Faculty provided information that challenged the traditional hourly fee model. Especially useful for in-house counsel.

JK
John K.

Good presentation overall.

JT
Johanna T.

This CLE was EXCELLENT!

LV
Laura V.

Excellent speakers

CM
Craig M.

good presentation

GJ
Glenn J.

Very helpful and practical advice.

CR
Chere R.

Very interesting well presented

MS
Max S.

some really good ideas as conventional hourly rates escalate so rapidly

PG
Paul G.

This was great!

LP
Lily P.

I have never used Lawline before but I will start to more now. It was very convenient and I like that way the page appears with the window for the speakers and the window with the written materials on the same page.

SO
Stanley O.

Well done with good scope and presentation

JF
Jordan F.

good presentation. nice to have two people.

JW
John W.

Good peogram

BN
Bruce N.

A well doe overview of alternative billing options along with concerns and remedies

AS
Assly S.

Very useful for a small or solo business owner to watch. Even though I use some of these alternatives already, hearing the ethical considerations and practice pointers was very helpful.

CM
Catherine M.

Great program!

LC
Lyn C.

Speakers were excellent. It was great that the written materials went beyond the slides.

BC
Bradley C.

goood material

AP
andrew p.

Great speakers that present well together

CK
Clayton K.

I really liked the two ladies in this particular program. Very insightful. Kept the listener interested.

BS
Brenda S.

Learned a lot about fees In other states

BP
Bernard P.

very informative... good ideas....

RF
Renee F.

Interesting and well done.

KD
Kenneth D.

Clear, direct communication at a good pace.

BH
Bruce H.

good presentation on a timely topic...

AC
Andrew C.

Very helpful

HT
Hayward T.

Thanks for the idea on 10 hour legal fee bundles.

SL
Susan L.

Good speakers; interesting topic.

WT
William T.

Good Stuff

CO
Chukwuka O.

Great instructor!

AC
Ashley C.

This was excellent, and as an attorney that prefers alternative billing options this by far my most helpful CLE this year

KJ
Kevin J.

good for an introductory general overview

KW
Kathryne W.

extremely enlightening! such great suggestions on how to improve the client relationship.

MT
Michelle T.

Enjoyed this one.

BL
Barbara L.

Very Beneficial

CB
CAROL B.

probably one of the most useful CLE courses for any attorney

AT
Andrea T.

It is refreshing to see a discussion and have attorneys recognize the pitfalls of the traditional law firm billing arrangements.

KM
Kevin M.

I enjoyed this program as Alternative Billing Arrangements are obviously a part of the legal practice landscape.

RJ
Roger J.

Good tips

RB
Reginia B.

It was very informative.

DD
Dawn D.

Seminar was very informative and educational.

CC
Christopher R. C.

interesting.

AC
Alfred C.

Seeing written examples of alternative fee agreements would have been great.

TC
Tyler C.

Interesting topic.

SW
Stephen W.

Forms would have helped.

RL
Richard L.

PROVIDED NEW INSIGHT INTO BILLING

DA
Diana A.

Excellent course

PS
P Brook S.

Very instructive course with engaging speakers.

DL
Donald L.

The speakers gave a lot of practical advice on the topic - alternative fee arrangements, which we will see a lot more of going forward.

MF
Marnie F.

Great rapport between the two presenters.

JR
Jana R.

nice video

CB
carol b.

Excellent

MT
Mo T.

Excellent presentation.

RF
Ricks F.

I could not agree more that good, open communication is the key to success in maintaining good client relations and avoiding disputes.

CE
Charles E.

Good Presentation as far as it goes. Covers key ethical issues clearly.

NG
Neil G.

good presentation of a difficult area

TT
Tina T.

very informative and practical

MB
Matthew B.

Excellent speakers, great topic.

MY
Melissa Y.

surprisingly interesting and informative

MZ
Maxwell Z.

Good course.

MG
Mario G.

Excellent presentation. Thoughtful and clear.

JG
Jeffrey G.

Very well presented. Enjoyed the two person format.

FG
Fabian G.

very useful information

MB
Melanie B.

Informative. Nice presentation.

MU
Marissa U.

The attorneys did a fabulous job. This program was both informative and engaging. The only issue I had was static in the audio and stopping/starting with the video.

RS
Robert S.

Really collegial and enjoyable way to cover the subject.

MR
Maryjane R.

Engaging speakers

JZ
Jennifer Z.

Interesting subject

LK
Laurie K.

great program. so good to hear from progressive attorneys on this topic.

TP
Theodore P.

a nice discussion dealing with the issues of billable hours

MM
Michael M.

Very good.

IT
Isaac T.

Thoroughly enjoyed the presentation.

VO
Vanessa O.

Great presentation. Interesting billing alternatives

TO
Tammy O.

interesting

GA
Ginger A.

excellent

RS
Richard S.

Well done by both speakers.

DB
Deborah B.

I found this most interesting. I have worked for attorneys who have flat fee arrangements and hourly arrangements, but I currently do contract work for any attorney who does almost exclusively flat fee but hasn't actually tracked how much time he spends

JP
james p.

Very good program -- thanks.

MW
Marta W.

Very interesting

LN
Laura N.

Very interesting and engaging presentation.

RB
Robin B.

Interesting ideas to consider.

PJ
Pamela J.

a great presentation - filled with information

AP
Andrew P.

Solid presentation

AW
Andrea W.

Very interesting!

PW
Patrick W.

I liked it. Both ladies were great.

JP
Jodi P.

Very relevant subject area for all attorneys

MJ
MITZI J.

very interesting

JL
Jose L.

great

MV
Michael V.

Good course

EV
Elaine V.

good points regarding necessity of demonstrating value in any arrangement

BB
Burnice B.

Substance was excellent. Speakers were very effective.

LS
LEONEL A. S.

Sample agreements would have been beneficial, but still a good presentation.

MW
Michael W.

Excellent presentation.

CH
Christopher H.

Fee discrepancies interesting

BL
Bryan L.

Fun to listen to.

TH
Theresa H.

Excellent presentation. Very clear and great examples.

MB
Mark B.

Good mix of two instructors

DC
David C.

Bespoke firms? Who knew? This was of great value to me, even if I am not in private sector at present.

EP
Edward P.

This was an excellent course. It was both interesting and informative.

FM
Faber M.

These ladies were interesting to listen to. They keep the conversation alive and real.

EC
Eric C.

Fantastic

RB
RICHARD B.

good seminar

SN
Stu N.

A greater emphasis on the particular types of alternative fee agreements and discussion of the cases would improve this course.

PH
Perry H.

SPEAKERS WERE VERY KNOWLEDGEABLE

DM
Douglas M.

It was helpful and interesting and potentially important going forward to how hourly billing might evolve. Did not address "alternative" ways to undertake contingency representations on the plaintiff side.

TJ
Thomas A. J.

It was a great seminar. It was informative and educational.

MC
Michael C.

Very smooth team teaching method.

GG
Gerardo G.

Liked it very worthwhile.

KH
KENNETH H.

great

DL
Donna L.

Excellent!!

SZ
Sheldon O Z.

Good

MW
Mark W.

Good Seminar

WL
Warren L.

The Real Life examples contributed much. I like the dialogure format. The speakers were accessible and honest. Great!

FM
Fred M.

Great practical advice.

VB
Voneka B.

The material presented was interesting and the speakers were effective.

RR
Randall R.

Interesting discussion.

AW
Angela W.

Both ladies were very comfortable and knowledgeable of the subject. Made it easier to listen to.

DO
Donald O.

very clear

TF
Thomas F.

well done

LM
Loretta M.

good

TF
Troy F.

Very practical approach to the subject.

DM
Davide M.

Good content.

MM
Marie A M.

These attorneys were terrific...a very smooth and concise presentation with great information. Very practical alternative which could attract more clients.

DD
Daniel D.

good course

AS
Andrew S.

good program.

GN
Gary N.

Great job

JS
Jie Amy S.

good

SB
Sheila B.

Very enjoyable...and different from many other traditional presentations on legal issues.

AT
Alan T.

Good course and information.

AK
Anne K.

good program overall

SD
Samantha D.

Passionate and dynamic speaker!

WL
William L.

Nice backdrops. I like the the lively interaction between them and the "tag-team" switch offs on substance. Good idea to use East Coast and West Coast example.

JP
John R. P.

Very Informative !!

KC
Kristine C.

Absolutely excellent! Both speakers rock!

KM
karen m.

I l iked this course; it was interesting.

KD
KIMBERLY D.

Useful info

WK
W. Rainer K.

Issues clearly presented.

EF
Elliot F.

Overall good job. The speakers were engaging and offered a valuable perspective

FM
Francis M.

very informative and good speakers

RF
Rene F.

Well presented.

JC
Joshua C.

Instructors had good energy level--important for a presentation on billing and fees. Good job covering topic, motivations, questions, etc.

WH
William H.

Interesting presentation.

VB
Veryl B.

Very informative course. Communicate fees and value for services is very important for build client trust.

JO
Julie O.

Nice presentation of very good material!

CA
Chartrisse A.

Learned so much!

JG
JAMES G.

Speakers are knowledgeable in this area.

JP
joseph p.

well presented and very practical.

TC
Tatiana C.

Introduces interesting ideas

ER
Elizabeth R.

Interesting alternative ideas for fees.

RK
RUTH K.

Very well-executed program. Appreciated the speakers' realistic and pragmatic approach

LE
Laura E.

Good coverage of topic and very enjoyable speakers. Thanks!

WH
Wil H.

Good pace. Nice back and forth between the speakers.

MH
Mieko H.

I enjoyed having two presenters - it kept the conversation more interesting.

SK
Steven K.

Good class.

JD
jennifer d.

very good!

PC
Paul F. C.

Superb and understandable

LF
Lawrence R. F.

good topic for law firm economics.

MS
Manish C. S.

interesting

JK
Joung Ho K.

Interesting options for getting paid by the clients.

KR
Kevin R.

I am an inhouse counsel who found this interesting from the other side of the relationship. You might want to include in your description the relevance of this subject for inhouse counsel.

MG
Maria G.

Engaging and informative. I will be researching this topic further.

GM
Gerard M.

good speakers and good presentation

DB
Daniel B.

well done

DM
Donald M.

articulate, upbeat, thought-provoking

FK
Frank K.

good presentation

GW
Gary W.

I would have appreciated seeing some alternative fee / retainer agreements presented in the materials.

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