AFAs and Facing the Client

Collectively authored by Julia Hughes, Lucy Curci-Gonzalez, Marcia Burris and Cheryl Niemeier

The billable hour has ruled the legal world for decades. Along with other massive changes that have taken place since 2009 there has also been a shift in how law firms bill their clients. Alternative Fee Arrangements (or AFAs) have become more common in the past five years. How our firms bill clients affects all legal professionals, even (and maybe especially) law librarians. And while the billable hour is certainly not dead, alternative fee arrangements are garnering a place of great importance on the law firm billing stage.

The “AFAs and Facing the Client” afternoon breakout session at the 2014 PLL Summit, will explore what AFAs are and how law librarians can get involved in the legal pricing conversation. Paul Covey, the Managing Director for Strategic Analytics at O’Melveny & Myers, will start the program off by providing an overview of Alternative Fee Arrangements, followed by a look at how librarians are, or could be, involved in developing and implementing the components of an AFA.  Finally the program closes with actionable ways to be involved in “Facing the Client,” be it our attorneys or the firm’s clients in the fee process.

Understanding not only the nature of AFAs, but how libraries can contribute to the process is an important part of our growth as information professionals in the changing law firm landscape. This session will provide librarians with the tools needed to successfully contribute to the pricing dialog and actively participate in effective AFAs.


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