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THAT CAN BE ARRANGED - Law firms have, to their credit, shown a remarkable (and, let’s be real, surprising) ability over the past year to be flexible when forced out of their comfort zones, embracing remote work and taking a scalpel to expenses that once seemed untouchable. Now, we can add increased fee flexibility to that list. While alternatives to the billable hour are nothing new, the pandemic has accelerated the industry’s move toward more innovative fee structures, Law.com’s Dan Packel reports. With budgetary pressure weighing heavily on in-house leaders, firms have displayed a willingness to work with their clients to find common ground on pricing. The intended effect of these alternative fee arrangements is to provide clients with more predictability and to make outside counsel work more efficiently. “The real value of an alternative fee is putting the risk of inefficiency back on the law firm, where I believe it belongs,” said Ethan Trull, a partner at Nixon Peabody and veteran of AFAs.

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