Law Journal Newsletters

An ALM Website

The Red Zone


By Allan Colman, Managing Director, the Closers Group:

  • E-Mail this Article
  • View Printable Article

In-house counsel often complain to each other about what they are not getting from their law firms as promised during the proposal and romancing phase. And although outside counsel may be providing services "as usual", and don't challenge themselves to review their promises to new clients, the insiders should hold their feet to the fire. What commitments did the law firm make to you and what do you need to do to remind them that they are not delivering? Are you finding that the proposed rate structure is somehow blending into higher monthly billings? When was the last time you mentioned it? If you thought you were hiring a winner, and are seeing a dutiful brief filer, is it too late to make a change? And was one of your selection criteria the need for a broad spectrum of potential legal services, only to find the firm can't deliver due to over capacity and under staffing?

If in-house counsel should be task masters insisting on receiving what they were promised, then outside counsel should be asking themselves these same questions to insure they are delivering. Don't forget the commitments made.

We will continue with this theme of client expectations and the disconnect that often occurs.


Be the first to comment on this post using the section below.

Add your comments

Log In

You must be logged in to comment


Enter your information below to begin your FREE registration



Office vs. Retail Leasing: Practical Considerations for the Retail Tenant

Experienced retail tenants are generally well versed in commonly negotiated retail provisions such as those pertaining to exclusive use rights, opening and operating co-tenancies, "go-dark" rights and percentage rent. This article discusses some of the material differences between common leasing concepts addressed in both retail and office leases.


A Blurry Distinction with a Huge Difference: Commercial vs. Non-Commercial Speech

Imagine the following two scenarios, and try to figure out what the real difference is. First, your competitor blatantly lies in its advertising about the effectiveness of its products; second, your competitor blatantly lies to a reporter about the effectiveness of its products, and the reporter publishes the lies in an article or in a magazine. It seems like the same situation, but it is not. With the first, you could sue for false advertising because the advertisement is “commercial” speech, whereas with the second, you cannot because the magazine article is “non-commercial” speech. A similar difference is presented if a newspaper uses a picture of a celebrity without the celebrity’s consent to highlight a news article, as opposed to a company using the same celebrity picture in a print advertisement, in the same newspaper, to promote the company. A breach of the celebrity’s right of publicity claim is not available against the newspaper because the news article is “non-commercial,” but is available against the company because the print advertisement is “commercial.” The rationale for both is that while the First Amendment fully protects “non-commercial” speech, it protects “commercial’ speech in a significantly limited way.