X

Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.
An Association of Corporate Counsel law firm rating system unveiled last month has triggered a lot of interest from the association’s in-house lawyer members, who have submitted 1,500 firm reviews. Lawyers at firms are less enthused. Firms have been crying foul on several fronts, foremost because the in-house counsel comments are anonymous and could cloak lawyers with axes to grind, such as disgruntled former law firm associates. That’s according to the Zeughauser Group, the legal consultancy. Zeughauser wrote to law firms and news organizations last week detailing the feedback it’s been getting from law firms. The organization declared that the ratings were “cause for concern.” “We don’t see how not sharing reviews with law firms helps accomplish ACC’s mission of fostering change,” Kent Zimmerman, a Zeughauser consultant in Chicago, said in an e-mail message to The National Law Journal. He said that his organization is channeling the sentiments of law firm clients who are reluctant to independently take on the ACC. Since the ACC initiated its “value index” last month, its members have shared their opinions about the performances of 500 law firms. The ACC has used the mainly anonymous input to rank firms on a five-point scale. The evaluations and ratings are viewable only by ACC members. Zeughauser Group chief Peter Zeughauser, a former ACC national chairman, has had “an extensive dialogue” about the index’s perceived drawbacks with the ACC and has met with ACC President Fred Krebs, Zimmerman said. In an interview, Krebs said that the association plans to make the feedback available to law firms before year’s end and is studying how best to do that. The index is still in the early stages of development and the ACC wanted to have a critical mass of evaluations before disseminating the information more widely, he said. “You need to have a good number of evaluations to make it meaningful. Otherwise, one or two either very good or very bad evaluations would skew the ratings,” Krebs said. So far, about two-thirds of the evaluations have been anonymous, but Krebs hopes that more lawyers will identify themselves in future reviews. The association wanted to give members the option to opine anonymously to encourage candor, he said. Krebs noted that the index is intended to help in-house counsel squeeze more value for their money at a time when companies are seeking ways to reduce legal costs. The association hopes the information will spur communication both among its members and between them and firms, he said. So far, the ratings have been quite high — 4.4 or 4.5 on average, Krebs said. “We’re not interested in bad-mouthing firms or beating up on firms,” Krebs said. “This is meant to be a member service and to stimulate dialogue.”

This content has been archived. It is available exclusively through our partner LexisNexis®.

To view this content, please continue to Lexis Advance®.

Not a Lexis Advance® Subscriber? Subscribe Now

Why am I seeing this?

LexisNexis® is now the exclusive third party online distributor of the broad collection of current and archived versions of ALM's legal news publications. LexisNexis® customers will be able to access and use ALM's content by subscribing to the LexisNexis® services via Lexis Advance®. This includes content from the National Law Journal®, The American Lawyer®, Law Technology News®, The New York Law Journal® and Corporate Counsel®, as well as ALM's other newspapers, directories, legal treatises, published and unpublished court opinions, and other sources of legal information.

ALM's content plays a significant role in your work and research, and now through this alliance LexisNexis® will bring you access to an even more comprehensive collection of legal content.

For questions call 1-877-256-2472 or contact us at [email protected]

 
 

ALM Legal Publication Newsletters

Sign Up Today and Never Miss Another Story.

As part of your digital membership, you can sign up for an unlimited number of a wide range of complimentary newsletters. Visit your My Account page to make your selections. Get the timely legal news and critical analysis you cannot afford to miss. Tailored just for you. In your inbox. Every day.

Copyright © 2020 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.