“ACC Primer: Using a Structured Process to Allocate Work,” ACC Value Practice (Dec.
2010), available at
“Looking Beyond Your Backyard: Outsourcing Legal Processes,” ACC Docket 28, no. 8 (Oct.
2010): 52, available at
“Value Practice: Sourcing Legal Work in India Leads to Significant Savings,” ACC Value
Practice (Jan. 2009), available at
“Selecting and Managing International Law Firms,” ACC QuickCounsel (June 2009),
“Unbundling Legal Services & Strategic Use of Law Firms in Lower Cost Cities,” ACC
Value Practice (Nov. 2009), available at
“Managing Outside Counsel: Using Law Firm Networks to Help Find Value with Small and
Mid-sized Firms,” ACC Docket 28, no. 2 (Mar. 2010): 88-94, available at
“Value Practice: DuPont Paralegal Staffing,” ACC Value Practice (Sept. 2008), available at
www.acc.com/legalresources/resource.cfm?show=39865 (Encouraging effective paralegal
utilization as a practice that adds value).
On What Terms? Value-Based Fee Options
The other half of implementing the right approach—“on what terms”—raises a host of options in
terms of value-based fee structures. There are a variety of possibilities, depending upon how the
work is segmented and whether outside counsel compensation is correlated in some way to the
At the outset, though, it may be helpful to distinguish some commonly used approaches that are
not typically considered value-based fee structures, including discounts on hourly rates, tiered
volume discounts, and use of blended hourly rates. While helpful in part (because they’re an
“easy” short-term triage), none of these fit the definition of a value-based fee structure, which
assesses the value of the service from the client’s perspective—and is not based on law firm-centric
measures like profitability, utilization rate, hours worked, or cost to produce. A list of options that
do fit this definition is set forth below.