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WHAT WE’RE WATCHING

CREDIT WHERE IT’S DUE  - There may be greater attention being paid to diversity and inclusion recently, but most GCs are still failing to ask their outside counsel a crucial question: how do they decide who gets origination credit? As Dan Clark reports, if in-house leaders don’t inquire as to how credit is awarded at the law firms they use, the firms will have little to no incentive to change policies and systems that are often unfair to women and minorities. The good news is diversity & inclusion professionals, as well as in-house lawyers, told Clark that clients are slowly beginning to realize how much power they hold in their relationships with outside counsel, making them far less reluctant to broach topics like origination credit. In fact, for some in-house leaders, a willingness to have those conversations has become an expectation. “I would be very put off by someone who is refusing to go into a discussion about that [origination credit],” said Michele Coleman Mayes, chief legal officer of the New York Public Library. “I think most firms are savvy enough to include it. You have a fair amount of leverage when you are trying to decide if you are going to form a partnership with this firm.”

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