Best Practices in Outside Legal Fee Analysis
Legal fee analysis is the comprehensive review and analysis of attorney fees and costs in an outside legal matter. Professionals who routinely perform outside legal fee analysis include attorney fee experts, special fee masters, bankruptcy fee examiners, fee dispute mediators, and legal bill auditors.
The following best practices measures were developed over several years with input and consensus from thought leaders from across the legal fee analysis community. These best practice measures promote values such as ethics, independence, and professional development. These peer review driven standards help strengthen the legal fee analysis field by ensuring integrity in the process and and reliability in the results.
This professional code of conduct is considered the professional mainstream of legal fee analysis. All our members (i.e. fully qualified attorney fee experts, special fee masters, bankruptcy fee examiners, fee dispute mediators, and legal bill auditors) have pledged to follow Best Practices in Outside Legal Fee Analysis:
1. Adhere to the proper standard of reasonableness.
2. Observe a consistent and reliable methodology.
3. Keep updated on the latest jurisprudence of reasonable attorney fees and expenses.
4. Keep updated on the latest scholarship on reasonable attorney fees and expenses (i.e. empirical papers, studies, surveys, and reports).
5. Participate in professional development and CLE programs on attorney fees and legal billing topics.
6. Do not advertise false or intentionally misleading information or offer any guarantee of outcome.
7. Do not charge on a contingency basis (i.e. based on the results obtained).
8. Do not accept a case or client where there is an inherent conflict of interest.
9. Keep all fee, billing, and work product information in strict confidence.
10. Utilize technology where possible.
Please note: You don't need to be a NALFA member to follow Best Practices in Legal Fee Analysis.