Saturday, June 2, 2012

Potential Indicators of Defense Attorney Billing Abuse

It has become commonplace for the plaintiff bar to be attacked for filing either frivolous cases or increasing aggregate insurance costs through large verdicts and settlements.  Any plaintiff attorney will argue that these notions are preposterous. The United States civil legal system is predicated on the principle that wrongs should be righted. This is why medical malpractice caps and other alleged tort reforms are unconstitutional.  In these cases, a person has been harmed, and insurance companies and corporate defendants want nothing more than to prevent wrongs from being fully remedied, allegedly for the greater good, but really for the good of the insurer's or the corporation's profit margin. 

To be fair though insurers are equal opportunity spendthrifts. While seeking to limit injury case recoveries, insurance companies also spend considerable time rooting out billing abuse by defense attorneys.  Without further ado, here are several indicators that your defense attorney may be engaging in billing abuse:

-overuse of internal conferencing within the law firm
-over staffing the case
-excessive review and analysis of the case
-over researching or researching on well-established case law
-large legal fees for generating standard form documents
-missing work product or receipts
-markups of 100 to 400 percent on fixed cost items such as meals, faxes, or photocopies.
-excess time summarizing a deposition
-overqualified persons performing a task
-travel time for more than one attorney
-billing rate increases that have not been authorized
-unnecessary motion practice that accomplishes nothing and wastes time and money.

Contact a Chicago attorney at 312.726.1616 if you have questions about a personal injury case.


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