LEGAL FEE INVOICES AND EXPERT
opinions from many states all stand for the proposition that only an attorney
can testify as to the reasonableness and hence the legal acceptability of a
legal bill. Typical is Woodhaven, Ltd. v.
Shamoun [and] Norman, LLP, 422
S.W.3d 821 (Tex. App.–Dallas, 2014) no writ.
law because it is not unheard of for law firms to sue their clients for the
non-payment of fees. Consequently, most
clients –all who are not themselves lawyers–cannot testify in court that the
fees charged charged them or that the bills presented to them were
unreasonable. This is the “black letter” law of the land. No questions about
may be involved here?
or less what other types of lawyers at that “rank” charge for that sort of work
in a given region?
padding in the bills?
lawyers involved in this or that project?
accordance with the specified scope of the work?
which a charge is being made done reasonably well under the circumstances?
And so forth.
think about it, sense cannot be made out of the restriction included in the
obviously, someone who was an attorney but isn’t any more, might well be an
expert on the topic.
as obvious, if someone isn’t yet an attorney but have been working on auditing
legal bills and overseeing lawyers (e.g., some types of insurance adjusters or
has been trained as a lawyer and never became one, but had been handling
supervising lawyer for a long time, should be able to testify.
manager who has been dealing with lawyer for years on end may well be just as
good at judging bills and some areas of performance as any lawyers. (Some
insurance adjusters and some underwriters are like this.)
business who has been involved and transactions and litigation for a good part
of his/her adult life might be qualified to be an expert.
person who has been dealing with the same firm for a long time might be an
expert. This could happen if the quality
of the firm’s performances declined noticeable over time, and the client
representative was sometimes reasonably careful in watching what was going on.
be other sorts of cases, and the particulars of this or that case might or
might not fit with the general categories I just quickly sketched out, or might
be able to off in the future.