The Billable Hours Derby: Empirical Data on the Problems and Pressure Points
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This article considers the consequences of law firm use of the hourly billing method and the recent increase in billable hour requirements. Part I of this article describes the rationale and methodology of an empirical study conducted in 2005 that explored attorney work-life issues and employer efforts to assist attorneys in dealing with work-life conflicts. Part II summarizes select study findings related to billable hours requirements and pressure. Part III concludes by considering what forces and players will change the current course of conduct in which law firm leaders treat increases in billable hours expectations as a necessary evil.
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