Esquire Viewpoint: Getting you ready for what's next in litigation

The world of litigation is rapidly evolving. Learn how to get more from your investments, improve outcomes, and seize the opportunities inherent in change.

Build the Bottom Line

Six ways to unleash your inner rainmaker

The internet continues to dismantle institutions. Two decades ago, consumers would buy everything they needed from one or two department stores. Then the internet came along, and that became the store: Consumers searched first for the product they wanted, hardly caring at all which retailer it came from. If it came from Sears, great. Amazon? That was great, too.

Drive Better Outcomes

Transcripts make great teachers

My first deposition seemed to go pretty well. It was 17 years ago. I left the room feeling good about how I handled a hostile witness. But when I read through the transcript a few days later, I cringed a bit. I hadn’t done quite as well as I initially thought. The questions I asked […]

Navigate Litigation 2.0

Quiz: Are you a legal pad lawyer or an iPad lawyer?

It’s been more than a century since the invention of the legal pad, a staple of this profession (and, incidentally, Seinfeld’s canvas of choice for four decades).

Are you a legal pad lawyer? Or an iPad lawyer?

Drive Better Outcomes

Tackling shared challenges of firms & clients

With 40,000 members, the CLM is the largest insurance industry professional trade association for claims and litigation professionals. We are the consulting arm of the CLM, and we advise litigation and claim executives, law firms, and service and technology companies on how to make their businesses stronger.

Build the Bottom Line

National deposition services contracts: good for law firms, too

Corporate legal departments that hire a nationwide company to provide deposition services for their law firms may be requiring some of their firms to adapt to new ways of doing business. However, many law firms find that these types of arrangements have advantages.

Navigate Litigation 2.0

Five litigation headaches I could have avoided

Much has changed since I left full-time litigation. Back then, and we’re talking fewer than five years ago (lest I sound like an old man lamenting my two-way uphill walk to school), nobody I knew was using the deposition technology that’s available today. Almost everything happened in person, and the work product was usually trapped in paper.

Navigate Litigation 2.0

To protect clients, look beyond your corporate network

Unfortunately, cybercriminals see law departments and firms as enticing targets: They are replete with financial data, personal information (such as the plaintiff registry in a class action), and the kind of confidential information that tips multimillion-dollar cases. As the ABA (PDF) put it: Law firms are targets for two general reasons: (1) they obtain, store […]

Build the Bottom Line

Why Pro Bono Work Makes You a Better Attorney (and a Better Person)

Some of the most impactful moments of my career are tied to the pro bono work I’ve done. Without pro bono, it’s unlikely that I would’ve had the opportunity to participate in a Supreme Court case (PDF). But as thrilling as that was, it was the pro bono representation of a widow who had lost faith in the legal system that sticks out as a highlight of my career.

Build the Bottom Line

Seven ways to keep corporate counsel happy

As my company’s general counsel, I depend heavily on my outside law firms and lawyers. I value these relationships – and my lawyers do, too, since I pay their bills. I’m writing this post to help outside lawyers keep inside counsel happy.

Drive Better Outcomes

Avoid (or at least survive) bet-the-company litigation

We recently blogged about the rapid growth of bet-the-company litigation. Short version of that post: the number of companies involved in such cases is quadrupling. If you’re corporate counsel, you want to do your best to avoid such risky, resource-devouring litigation, and survive it when it’s inevitable.

Drive Better Outcomes

Why does consolidation stop with your law firms?

Corporate law departments and insurance claims organizations continue to consolidate their outside law firms in order to control spending, streamline processes and improve performance. But why do these organizations often restrict their consolidation effort to the law firms?

Drive Better Outcomes

What’s driving bet-the-company litigation?

Although corporate litigation spending is flat, the number of companies managing “bet-the-company” litigation has quadrupled in the last two years, posing new challenges to corporate counsel, outside counsel and litigators.

Bet-the-company litigation can be any legal action that threatens the existence of the company or major line of business, whether or not the case goes to trial.

Navigate Litigation 2.0

Cybersecurity: have you checked your service providers?

Cybersecurity is only as strong as your weakest link. No matter how well you shore up your firm or corporate legal department, you can still become vulnerable through a vendor. That was the case for Target and Home Depot, which have suffered costly, embarrassing, and damaging breaches that jeopardized customer relationships.

Navigate Litigation 2.0

Seize the power in your next deposition

I blogged the other day on why you’d want to, or need to, video-record a deposition: a witness being out of the country, outside subpoena power, sick, or otherwise unavailable. Or maybe a key witness for your side is better on camera than in print. (On the flip side, you’d want to video-record opposing witnesses who discredit themselves on camera).

Drive Better Outcomes

Expert witnesses, your quintessential storytellers

Verdicts often come down to who tells the better story. As a litigator, you sometimes need help telling your story, so you turn to an expert witness.

When you work with experts, are you getting everything you need from them? Many lawyers aren’t.

Navigate Litigation 2.0

If only I’d had video…

I was a big-firm litigator for 14 years before joining Esquire as general counsel. I loved the chess match, the battle, and pinning opposing witnesses down.

But on one particular day, in a complex securities arbitration, I found myself sitting in the witness chair.

Drive Better Outcomes

Multigenerational approach drives growth in law firms

The aging workforce poses risks for every business – and law firms are hardly an exception. The vast majority of managing partners are baby boomers, age 52 to 71. Are you prepared for upcoming decades? It’s not easy.

Drive Better Outcomes

Don’t complicate complex litigation

Complex litigation. It’s a synonym for high stress, and it’s daunting for law firms, lawyers and the people who support them. What exactly does the term complex litigation mean? It generally signifies a case with high stakes, complicated procedures, multiple parties, multiple jurisdictions, media scrutiny, lengthy discovery and big investments in time and money. Class […]

Navigate Litigation 2.0

The case for video depositions

The law is made up of words, documents and abstractions. Many of us love this stuff. And we’re good at it. But it can put the rest of the world to sleep.

Take jurors, who live normal lives steeped in TV and

Build the Bottom Line

Let’s (re)think depositions

The world has gone digital – well, most of the world has. We’ve digitized the way we work, communicate, analyze, predict, sell and buy. The practice of law has gone digital as well. There’s electronic case research, court filings, discovery, records management, video testimony and more.

So why do depositions still have to be so paper-intensive?

Build the Bottom Line

Who knew? A weapon to tackle ALAE, ULAE and loss cost

We don’t usually traffic in alphabet soup, but we know insurance defense, and we know how important each of these acronyms is to your business. They’re major costs you want to reduce. If you’re a claims exec, you know exactly what I’m talking about. If you’re new in the industry, let me explain.

Drive Better Outcomes

How to hone young lawyers’ deposition skills

It’s the same in law as it is in sports: great performances build on good practice.

For young attorneys, though, opportunities to practice depositions can be scarce, especially in real-life settings. That’s because litigation is increasingly focused on bet-the-company matters, and in those matters, senior litigators take center stage.

Drive Better Outcomes

Join a deposition from plane? Why not?

Practicing law can be stressful, and the stakes don’t get much higher than defending a high-profile class-action suit. Except when you’re defending one of the biggest companies on the planet. And you’re the lead attorney on the case. And it’s looking like you’ll have to miss the most important deposition in the case.

Drive Better Outcomes

eBook: Get the Most From Remote Depositions

Remote depositions are an exciting, rapidly maturing method for making depositions more cost-effective and strategic. Download our eBook to learn: What are remote depositions? Why should you care about remote depositions? What are some use cases for taking remote depositions today? Eight best practices for conducting effective depositions using remote technology.

Navigate Litigation 2.0

The growing challenge of international litigation

International litigation poses a host of challenges for firms and their clients, and the demand for services related to this litigation is rising.

The share of corporate counsel needing to conduct cross-border discovery rose to 41 percent in 2015-2016, up from 35 percent the year before.