Running the firm

Fee shifts an issue for court reporters

May 4, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
In certain situations, Tom Richardson will watch two attorneys in a deposition and will know one is going to get stuck with a bigger bill for the same service.
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Hicks to be next firm-wide managing partner at Taft

March 9, 2016
IL Staff
Indianapolis partner Robert J. Hicks will be the next firm-wide managing partner at Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP, the firm announced Tuesday.
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2040 vision: Lawyers look at the future

December 30, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
As part of Indiana Lawyer’s commemoration of its silver anniversary this year, we asked a varied group of attorneys to look ahead to the year 2040. They outlined what they thought the profession would be like, how they hoped the profession would change, and what they did not want the profession to become.
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Henderson: Survey reveals signs of fundamental change in the legal profession

December 2, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
The traditional career path for Indiana attorneys – graduate from law school, become an associate in a law firm, work long hours and eventually become a partner – appears to be broken, or at least cracked.
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Survey: Attorney social media use largely governed by personal responsibility

December 2, 2015
Dave Stafford
By a more than 2-to-1 margin, attorneys who responded to the IL survey said their organization encourages them to promote themselves and their firm or organization, compared to those who said their organization discourages social media.
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Focus for law firms: Clients, clients, clients

December 2, 2015
Dave Stafford
Law firms large and small face similar challenges – keeping costs down and quality high while also finding ways to sustain and grow the business.
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Survey: Succession planning a top concern for organizations

December 2, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Thirty-eighty percent of the respondents to the Indiana Lawyer’s 2015 Practicing Law in Indiana survey listed transition or succession planning as the greatest challenge to their organization’s viability. Only the issue of managing costs while protecting quality of service topped this concern, which 42 percent found to be the greatest challenge.
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Protecting Your Practice: Avoid problematic fee agreements

December 2, 2015
Neal Bowling, Dina Cox
It is crucial to have a clear, written agreement with your client explaining not just the scope of your services, but how you will be paid for those services. Be careful that you don’t run afoul of your professional obligations in that fee agreement or in your billing.
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Figuring out flat fees

November 4, 2015
Dave Stafford
A recent Indiana State Bar Association Legal Ethics Committee opinion says lawyers who charge clients flat fees considered earned on receipt shouldn’t deposit the fees in their Interest on Lawyer Trust Account, but should put the money in the firm’s operating account. Some lawyers aren’t convinced this makes sense.
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Indianapolis Mass Ave. firm splits

September 23, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Although the law firm of Price Waicukauski & Riley has split, the plaintiff’s lawyers, who have successfully handled complex litigation and large class actions, say the separation is amicable and their respective practices will continue.
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Survey reveals managing partners’ economic mood is muted

July 28, 2015
 Bloomberg News
Managing partners at the end of 2014 expressed renewed economic confidence. The mood seems less rosy now, according to the latest survey by the Law Firm Group at Citi Private Bank.
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Pensions vex as ranks of retired partners grow

June 25, 2015
 Bloomberg News
The funding of pension plans remains problematic for many employers, and on June 17 the federal government named well-known attorney and mediation maven Kenneth Feinberg to supervise a new program that allows some pension funds to cut retiree benefits.
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To dodge conflicts, make waivers specific

June 11, 2015
 Bloomberg News
Should law firms rethink their client engagement letters, and more specifically, the advance waiver clauses they include?
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There’s a new kind of lateral hiring going on

May 28, 2015
 Bloomberg News
A number of partners are moving to new roles as law firms begin to emulate their corporate clients. C-suite jobs like chief talent officer and chief innovation officer are popping up, filled by partners asked to try something new.
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Startups take cloud-based tech savvy to legal realm

May 20, 2015
Jared Council
To some, the phrase “legal challenges” means lawsuits. For a few Indianapolis tech startups, it has an entirely different meaning: attorney pain points and business opportunities.
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Attorneys turn to blogs to market their services, find clients

May 20, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
When James Reed penned an article about pets and divorce, his colleagues at Bingham Greenebaum Doll LLP were about as enthusiastic as a cat facing a bath.
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Corporate clients are reshaping big law firms

May 20, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
The demands being made by corporate executives and legal departments are forcing law firms to change not only how they do business but also how they run their business.
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Law firms see overhead costs shift during past 25 years

January 28, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
All the modern devices and technology used by law firms these days come at a high cost and are often among the top firm expenses, according to managing partners.
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New managing partner takes helm at Barnes & Thornburg

November 6, 2014
IL Staff
Barnes & Thornburg LLP announced Thursday the new managing partner of its Indianapolis office.
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Retreating from the office

October 8, 2014
Dave Stafford
Meetings and events outside of the firm foster camaraderie and build relationships among staff.
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Making Rain: I'm pretty sure my clients love me

October 8, 2014
Dona Stohler
Most small to mid-sized companies use on average three to five law firms. Larger companies use even more. So, each and every day you are being compared to your competitors. Knowing how you compare to them in terms of your service and client satisfaction is good to know. You can get this information in a variety of ways and use it to bring in even more business from the client.
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IP lawyer among first to accept Bitcoin for services

September 10, 2014
Dave Stafford
Intellectual property attorney Paul Overhauser’s clients are often on the cutting edge of Internet technology, so he decided that in addition to dollars, he’ll take digital dough.
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Quick: Use the tools available to market today’s law firms

September 10, 2014
Lawyers are trying new and different ways to advertise with more focus on websites and digital media. But even today, problems remain.
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New partnerships require a shared vision, bit of nerve

July 30, 2014
Dave Stafford
Lawyers who’ve teamed up to start firms as partnerships say putting their professional names and reputations on the line together takes mutual trust, respect, a shared vision, and a fair amount of nerve.
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Metrics create benchmarks for 'granular' evaluations of lawyer performance

July 30, 2014
Dave Stafford
Metrics measuring attorney and law firm performance have exploded in recent years, and trend watchers say the implications for the industry are only beginning to be felt.
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  1. Why in the world would someone need a person to correct a transcript when a realtime court reporter could provide them with a transcript (rough draft) immediately?

  2. If the end result is to simply record the spoke word, then perhaps some day digital recording may eventually be the status quo. However, it is a shallow view to believe the professional court reporter's function is to simply report the spoken word and nothing else. There are many aspects to being a professional court reporter, and many aspects involved in producing a professional and accurate transcript. A properly trained professional steno court reporter has achieved a skill set in a field where the average dropout rate in court reporting schools across the nation is 80% due to the difficulty of mastering the necessary skills. To name just a few "extras" that a court reporter with proper training brings into a courtroom or a deposition suite; an understanding of legal procedure, technology specific to the legal profession, and an understanding of what is being said by the attorneys and litigants (which makes a huge difference in the quality of the transcript). As to contracting, or anti-contracting the argument is simple. The court reporter as governed by our ethical standards is to be the independent, unbiased individual in a deposition or courtroom setting. When one has entered into a contract with any party, insurance carrier, etc., then that reporter is no longer unbiased. I have been a court reporter for over 30 years and I echo Mr. Richardson's remarks that I too am here to serve.

  3. A competitive bid process is ethical and appropriate especially when dealing with government agencies and large corporations, but an ethical line is crossed when court reporters in Pittsburgh start charging exorbitant fees on opposing counsel. This fee shifting isn't just financially biased, it undermines the entire justice system, giving advantages to those that can afford litigation the most. It makes no sense.

  4. "a ttention to detail is an asset for all lawyers." Well played, Indiana Lawyer. Well played.

  5. I have a appeals hearing for the renewal of my LPN licenses and I need an attorney, the ones I have spoke to so far want the money up front and I cant afford that. I was wondering if you could help me find one that takes payments or even a pro bono one. I live in Indiana just north of Indianapolis.

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