Running the firm

Departing the partner track

August 24, 2016
Dave Stafford
Law firms are looking for talent and signing up attorneys who fit clients’ needs in flexible arrangements that eschew the traditional associate-to-partner model. The trend addresses the firms’ needs to contain costs and the desire of many lawyers for more work-life balance.
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Taft names new partner-in-charge for Indy office

August 17, 2016
Scott Olson, IBJ Staff
Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP has a new partner-in-charge of its Indianapolis office, prompted by his predecessor’s promotion to lead the entire law firm.
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Technology lets lawyers pursue practices with no need to hit ‘print’

August 10, 2016
Dave Stafford
The paperless office has been an aspirational goal for many businesses including law firms for years. Advocates point to studies that say going paperless can increase efficiency by 25 to 50 percent and slash a law firm’s budget for paper, printers, printer cartridges and other traditional paperbound office supplies.
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Attorneys feel at home with virtual practices

May 18, 2016
Scott Roberts
Lawyers like Kenneth Riggins use virtual practices to reduce their overhead, while technology allows them to practice from anywhere. Many arrange to have access to office space they can use when they need it.
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Long-distance depositions

May 18, 2016
Dave Stafford
Technological advances in teleconferencing are making video depositions a more viable option to control litigation costs, but lawyers say in some cases there's no substitute for in-person questioning.
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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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  1. Indianapolis employers harassment among minorities AFRICAN Americans needs to be discussed the metro Indianapolis area is horrible when it comes to harassing African American employees especially in the local healthcare facilities. Racially profiling in the workplace is an major issue. Please make it better because I'm many civil rights leaders would come here and justify that Indiana is a state the WORKS only applies to Caucasian Americans especially in Hamilton county. Indiana targets African Americans in the workplace so when governor pence is trying to convince people to vote for him this would be awesome publicity for the Presidency Elections.

  2. Wishing Mary Willis only God's best, and superhuman strength, as she attempts to right a ship that too often strays far off course. May she never suffer this personal affect, as some do who attempt to change a broken system: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QojajMsd2nE

  3. Indiana's seatbelt law is not punishable as a crime. It is an infraction. Apparently some of our Circuit judges have deemed settled law inapplicable if it fails to fit their litmus test of political correctness. Extrapolating to redefine terms of behavior in a violation of immigration law to the entire body of criminal law leaves a smorgasbord of opportunity for judicial mischief.

  4. I wonder if $10 diversions for failure to wear seat belts are considered moral turpitude in federal immigration law like they are under Indiana law? Anyone know?

  5. What a fine article, thank you! I can testify firsthand and by detailed legal reports (at end of this note) as to the dire consequences of rejecting this truth from the fine article above: "The inclusion and expansion of this right [to jury] in Indiana’s Constitution is a clear reflection of our state’s intention to emphasize the importance of every Hoosier’s right to make their case in front of a jury of their peers." Over $20? Every Hoosier? Well then how about when your very vocation is on the line? How about instead of a jury of peers, one faces a bevy of political appointees, mini-czars, who care less about due process of the law than the real czars did? Instead of trial by jury, trial by ideological ordeal run by Orwellian agents? Well that is built into more than a few administrative law committees of the Ind S.Ct., and it is now being weaponized, as is revealed in articles posted at this ezine, to root out post moderns heresies like refusal to stand and pledge allegiance to all things politically correct. My career was burned at the stake for not so saluting, but I think I was just one of the early logs. Due, at least in part, to the removal of the jury from bar admission and bar discipline cases, many more fires will soon be lit. Perhaps one awaits you, dear heretic? Oh, at that Ind. article 12 plank about a remedy at law for every damage done ... ah, well, the founders evidently meant only for those damages done not by the government itself, rabid statists that they were. (Yes, that was sarcasm.) My written reports available here: Denied petition for cert (this time around): http://tinyurl.com/zdmawmw Denied petition for cert (from the 2009 denial and five year banishment): http://tinyurl.com/zcypybh Related, not written by me: Amicus brief: http://tinyurl.com/hvh7qgp

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