Monday, October 22, 2012
WSJ on firms buying lunch for clients using clients' own money
In class I am often asked if a lawyer violates the rule that says lawyers can't provide financial assistance to clients if the lawyer takes a client to lunch and pays the bill. Well, it turns out that the question may be a non-issue since firms may be charging the clients for those lunches after all... In a short article today, the Wall Street Journal law blog discusses the issue (here). It starts: "Here’s a tip for law firms who want to keep clients happy: Don’t buy them fancy lunches with their own money. . . . [Clients are] fighting over line items such as photocopies and food, and pushing back hard on charges for pricey legal research databases such as Westlaw and LexisNexis. Their position: many of these costs are law firm overhead, and so shouldn’t be passed on to the client in the first place."