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BETTER BILLABLES? - Virtual law firms have been inundated with requests from attorneys eager to join their ranks over the last year and a half, even as more traditional firms have begun to loosen up on their office attendance requirements. So if it’s not solely a desire to work from home that’s driving interest in virtual firms, what is it? Three terrifying words: billable hour requirements. David Reidy, managing partner of Silicon Valley-born virtual firm Scale, told Law.com’s Jessie Yount that it’s hard for lawyers to innovate and find better ways to deliver legal services if they’re spending 2,000 hours each year practicing law for the sake of meeting revenue targets. Virtual firms, Reidy and others said, offer attorneys an opportunity to be more entrepreneurial and to increase their focus on client service. “[W]hen you force someone to bill 2,000 hours a year, that starts to create an incentive that is in conflict with client interests,” Reidy said. “Law firms have historically offered one, quantitative flavor of success, and we feel it is time for a top-tier firm that wasn’t built on an hours-and-fees model.”

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