The assumptions of the “unpredictability defense” are flawed

LPM is adaptable by law firms and legal departments to high-stakes litigation and major corporate deals

Last month, we discussed the so-called unpredictability defense, which posits that major pieces of corporate litigation and major corporate transactions are so distinctive and so unpredictable that the concepts of advance budgeting and legal project management (LPM) don’t translate well in these contexts and that law firms can’t properly anticipate the cost of their services.

This attitude, which has been pervasive among law firm partners for many years, puts in-house counsel in conflict with senior company management, who are accustomed to employing budgeting and project management in nearly every other area of corporate spending. In-house counsel have been asked to embrace LPM and assume greater responsibility for managing the company's legal spend and to find outside counsel who are willing to master and apply LPM in the handling of the client's matters and to assume responsibility for delivering the right results "on budget.”

Contributing Author

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Samuel Goldblatt

Samuel Goldblatt is a Boston-based litigation partner at Nixon Peabody who represents domestic and foreign companies in a wide variety of cases, including commercial cases,...

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