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   Author  Topic: hours per week in biglaw firms?  (Read 2020 times)
nittanylion302
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hours per week in biglaw firms?
« on: Jun 6th, 2006, 10:11am »
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what kind of hours do IP/Patent people put in in big law firms?
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Bill Richards
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Re: hours per week in biglaw firms?
« Reply #1 on: Jun 6th, 2006, 6:22pm »
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It varies somewhat.  Some are as high as 2200/yr and as low as 1700 or so.  I worked for a large midwestern lawfirm that mandated 1850.  But, that's billable.  It's not always as easy as it sounds when you consider all the time spent doing work that is not billable.
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William B. Richards, P.E.
The Richards Law Firm
Patents, Trademarks, and Copyrights
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Re: hours per week in biglaw firms?
« Reply #2 on: Jun 6th, 2006, 7:56pm »
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I was interested in the answer to this question as well, but Bill didn't quite answer it for me.  I have seen 1850 as a popular number for billable hours/yr, but what I don't know is what percentage of hours worked are billable?  Of course it will be different for each person, but what is the general range--70%, 80%, 90%?  In other words, how many hours do you really work a year to bill 1850?  Maybe Bill or someone else can answer...
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Bill Richards
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Re: hours per week in biglaw firms?
« Reply #3 on: Jun 7th, 2006, 5:18am »
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It depends upon how "efficient" you are.  I've seen associates sit down at their desk at 8:00 in the morning, take no breaks, keep their nose to the grindstone, eat at their desk, leave at 5:00, and they've billed over eight hours.  On the other hand, I've known associates, who, by their own admission, like to schmooze around the office and take long lunch breaks.  They have to meet their quota somehow so they'll work late and/or come in on the weekend.  Another aspect is how you spend your non-billable time.  If you take a day to travel to a CLE class and a day to get back, you will be less "efficient" than one who runs over the the local bar association during lunch and picks up 1.5 hours or so.
One other element is afoot.  The law firms with which I'm familiar may reduce the number of hours billed by an associate, especially a newer associate.  For example, the associate may have devoted 60 hours to drafting an application.  If the supervising or billing partner thinks it's excessive, he may reduce it.  In many law firms, the associate only gets credit for the reduced hours.
Does that help?
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William B. Richards, P.E.
The Richards Law Firm
Patents, Trademarks, and Copyrights
614/939-1488
Isaac
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Re: hours per week in biglaw firms?
« Reply #4 on: Jun 7th, 2006, 5:42am »
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The firm I work for has a 1900 hour billing requirement plus a 2200 professional hour requirement.  The professional hour requirement captures non billable stuff you do at work like managing your docket, supervising your secretary, attending meetings, pro bono work or even billable hours above the 1900 requirement.   I think attorneys doing prosecution come close to getting their 1900 hours in within the 2200 required hours you have to be in the office (roughly 8.8 hrs per day not counting lunch).
 
Yes sometimes billable hours do get reduced, particularly for new associates who are not so efficient yet.
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Isaac
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