NY Law Firm's Own Emails Suggest They Grossly Overbilled Client
Granted, the notion that a law firm would overbill one of its clients is not shocking to the public, because unfortunately, too many instances of billing abuse - or at least the perception of abuse - has led to the perception that for law firms, this is the norm rather than an anomaly.
But it is indeed rare that a law firm will be caught memorializing such a practice in its own hand. Yet that is precisely what happened in the New York County case of DLA Piper v. Victor. In that case, the law firm (which boasts over 4,000 lawyers worldwide) sued to recover nearly $700,000 in unpaid legal bills. In response, the defendant claimed that DLA Piper had, among other things, breached their fiduciary duty to him by grossly overbilling him for services rendered.
While that is a standard defense, it highly unusual that a defendant is able to uncover internal emails from the law firm which challenged the lawyers working on the case to "churn that bill, baby," and "that bill shall know no limits."
No; I'm not kidding. That's what the emails said.
Not surprisingly, in the aftermath of the disclosure of these emails, the case was recently settled.