ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

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ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Sat Aug 15, 2020 1:00 pm

Wanted to start a thread for people to post info on their billable hour requirements (if any), actual yearly hours (avg. or estimated) + other relevant info (firm type, location, practice area, etc.)

[I know there have been prior threads on this topic, but inevitably people stop posting the actual info and start fighting about which firms suck, so although I do enjoy a good internet fight, I was hoping maybe we could also have a boring thread with just the info.]

I’ll start:

Firm Type: Boutique
Firm Name or Vault range: Firm too small to share
Practice Area: Litigation
Market: NYC
Billable Hours Minimum (& consequences for not meeting?): N/A
Allowed to count pro bono towards minimum? N/A
Informal Expectation? 2K+ maybe?
Current Estimate for Year (or avg. from past years): 2,200

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Sat Aug 15, 2020 1:40 pm

Firm Type: BigLaw
Firm Name or Vault range: V60
Practice Area: Finance
Market: Atlanta/Charlotte
Billable Hours Minimum (& consequences for not meeting?): 2,000 (no bonus)
Allowed to count pro bono towards minimum? Yes (up to 100)
Informal Expectation? 2,200+
Current Estimate for Year (or avg. from past years): 2,700+ (2020 annualized); 2,500+ (2019)

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Sat Aug 15, 2020 4:16 pm

Firm Type: Secondary Market Big(ish) Law
Firm Name or Vault range: AmLaw 100-150
Practice Area: Litigation
Market: St. Louis
Billable Hours Minimum (& consequences for not meeting?): 1850
Allowed to count pro bono towards minimum? Yes. No cap.
Informal Expectation? 1850
Current Estimate for Year (or avg. from past years): 2,500 (average 2,300 over 4 years)

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Sat Aug 15, 2020 4:58 pm

Firm Type: Boutique
Firm Name or Vault range: N/A
Practice Area: Litigation
Market: DC
Billable Hours Minimum (& consequences for not meeting?): N/A
Allowed to count pro bono towards minimum? Yes. No cap.
Informal Expectation? 2000?
Current Estimate for Year (or avg. from past years): 2,600 last year (most of any associate), ~2200-2300 this year

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Sun Aug 16, 2020 1:37 am

Firm Type: Boutique
Firm Name or Vault range: N/A.
Practice Area: N/A
Market: DC
Billable Hours Minimum (& consequences for not meeting?): 1,800 (potentially no pay bump on lockstep pay schedule).
Allowed to count pro bono towards minimum? Not for 1,800. Over 1,800 counted for bonus calculation.
Informal Expectation? N/A (have seen associates with under 1,200 who didn’t get any major backlash aside from no raise).
Current Estimate for Year (or avg. from past years): 2200 annualized for year. Most associates around 1500-2000 annualized.

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Sun Aug 16, 2020 11:44 pm

Firm Type: Biglaw
Firm Name or Vault range: V80
Practice Area: Finance
Market: NYC
Billable Hours Minimum (& consequences for not meeting?): 2,000 -- no bonus
Allowed to count pro bono towards minimum? 200
Informal Expectation? 2,000
Current Estimate for Year (or avg. from past years): 2,250

How are so many of you billing 2500+ yoy damn

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Aug 17, 2020 1:30 am

[first anon] not happily!

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Aug 17, 2020 4:48 am

Firm Type: BigLaw
Firm Name or Vault range: V40
Practice Area: Corporate (EC/VC)
Market: Bay Area
Billable Hours Minimum (& consequences for not meeting?): 1950 (No Bonus)
Allowed to count pro bono towards minimum? Yes. No cap.
Informal Expectation? 1950
Current Estimate for Year (or avg. from past years): ~2,700

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Aug 17, 2020 8:01 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 4:48 am
Firm Type: BigLaw
Firm Name or Vault range: V40
Practice Area: Corporate (EC/VC)
Market: Bay Area
Billable Hours Minimum (& consequences for not meeting?): 1950 (No Bonus)
Allowed to count pro bono towards minimum? Yes. No cap.
Informal Expectation? 1950
Current Estimate for Year (or avg. from past years): ~2,700

Probably the same place haha

Firm Type: BigLaw
Firm Name or Vault range: V40
Practice Area: Corporate (Life Sciences)
Market: Boston
Billable Hours Minimum (& consequences for not meeting?): 1950 (No Bonus)
Allowed to count pro bono towards minimum? Yes. No cap.
Informal Expectation? 1950
Current Estimate for Year (or avg. from past years): ~2,400

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by 2013 » Mon Aug 17, 2020 3:58 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 8:01 am
Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 4:48 am
Firm Type: BigLaw
Firm Name or Vault range: V40
Practice Area: Corporate (EC/VC)
Market: Bay Area
Billable Hours Minimum (& consequences for not meeting?): 1950 (No Bonus)
Allowed to count pro bono towards minimum? Yes. No cap.
Informal Expectation? 1950
Current Estimate for Year (or avg. from past years): ~2,700

Probably the same place haha

Firm Type: BigLaw
Firm Name or Vault range: V40
Practice Area: Corporate (Life Sciences)
Market: Boston
Billable Hours Minimum (& consequences for not meeting?): 1950 (No Bonus)
Allowed to count pro bono towards minimum? Yes. No cap.
Informal Expectation? 1950
Current Estimate for Year (or avg. from past years): ~2,400
Those are crazy hours for a firm that stealthed associates.

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Sackboy » Mon Aug 17, 2020 4:26 pm

2013 wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 3:58 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 8:01 am

Probably the same place haha

Firm Type: BigLaw
Firm Name or Vault range: V40
Practice Area: Corporate (Life Sciences)
Market: Boston
Billable Hours Minimum (& consequences for not meeting?): 1950 (No Bonus)
Allowed to count pro bono towards minimum? Yes. No cap.
Informal Expectation? 1950
Current Estimate for Year (or avg. from past years): ~2,400
Those are crazy hours for a firm that stealthed associates.
It not only stealthed them. It put up job postings in the group like two weeks later.

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Aug 17, 2020 5:19 pm

Sackboy wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 4:26 pm
2013 wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 3:58 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 8:01 am

Probably the same place haha

Firm Type: BigLaw
Firm Name or Vault range: V40
Practice Area: Corporate (Life Sciences)
Market: Boston
Billable Hours Minimum (& consequences for not meeting?): 1950 (No Bonus)
Allowed to count pro bono towards minimum? Yes. No cap.
Informal Expectation? 1950
Current Estimate for Year (or avg. from past years): ~2,400
Those are crazy hours for a firm that stealthed associates.
It not only stealthed them. It put up job postings in the group like two weeks later.
In the other East coast office that stealthed associates. Could you both stop hoarding hours? We need work over here... :lol:

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Aug 17, 2020 6:31 pm

For those of you billing well above the expectations, do you get really angry with each extra essentially uncompensated hour you bill? Even with above-market bonuses at my firm, working for a low $/hr after expectations leaves me upset

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Aug 17, 2020 7:37 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 5:19 pm

In the other East coast office that stealthed associates. Could you both stop hoarding hours? We need work over here... :lol:


Anon at a different firm (litigation firm). I just recently (in the last 1-2 months) learned just how rampant this "hoarding" phenomenon (and actually the person I heard it from used that exact same word) has become. It was a real eye-opener. Associates are doing this at my firm, and it's causing other associates to get pretty pissed. And a lot of the partners are totally oblivious to it.

Mind you, at my firm total comp is based on billed hours, so it makes sense that associates are holding over / hoarding work, but especially when you're on a relatively small team and has previously been at least sort of close with co-workers, this is pretty annoying to say the least.

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Aug 17, 2020 7:39 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 6:31 pm
For those of you billing well above the expectations, do you get really angry with each extra essentially uncompensated hour you bill? Even with above-market bonuses at my firm, working for a low $/hr after expectations leaves me upset
EC/VC anon here. I do enjoy my practice group quite a bit (people plus the substantive work), so not entirely discomforted. And WFH has, if anything, made taking that load much more manageable. Would be lying that, to your point, that the diminishing returns weren't beginning to chafe around the edges however.

And FWIW, if anyone wants to hop into the grinder and help alleviate our hours, happy to shoot you a DM...

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Aug 17, 2020 10:53 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 5:19 pm
Sackboy wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 4:26 pm
2013 wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 3:58 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 8:01 am

Probably the same place haha

Firm Type: BigLaw
Firm Name or Vault range: V40
Practice Area: Corporate (Life Sciences)
Market: Boston
Billable Hours Minimum (& consequences for not meeting?): 1950 (No Bonus)
Allowed to count pro bono towards minimum? Yes. No cap.
Informal Expectation? 1950
Current Estimate for Year (or avg. from past years): ~2,400
Those are crazy hours for a firm that stealthed associates.
It not only stealthed them. It put up job postings in the group like two weeks later.
In the other East coast office that stealthed associates. Could you both stop hoarding hours? We need work over here... :lol:
Life sciences anon. There is no hoarding going on here, life sciences doesn’t have enough bodies and everyone is getting absolutely crushed. I’m middle of the pack at 2,400 hours. They thought COVID would equal a slowdown in the life sciences capital markets... they thought wrong.

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Sackboy » Mon Aug 17, 2020 11:30 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 6:31 pm
For those of you billing well above the expectations, do you get really angry with each extra essentially uncompensated hour you bill? Even with above-market bonuses at my firm, working for a low $/hr after expectations leaves me upset
I find this view interesting.

When I was younger, I used to work for like $40 in an 8 hour day. The minimum wage was a nice $5.15/hr. I quite enjoyed my gigs. Now, I get paid several hundreds of thousands of dollars in the numerator and no amount of humanly possible hours in the denominator gets me remotely close to $5.15/hr. So, regardless of what I bill in a year, which is usually 2,400+, I chalk it up to a win.

I also think pegging your notion of fair compensation to whatever hour "requirement" your firm has stated is a great way to achieve unhappiness. My firm just tells me to bill, so that's what I do. I get paid several hundreds of thousands of dollars to bill. Some years it's up and some year it's down, but I put in my genuine effort to take all of the work that I can handle without a mental breakdown/destroying my life. That's good enough for me, and it seems to be good enough for my firm. Now, if I was at a firm that told me bill 1950 for your salary/bonus, I'd find it pretty toxic to my own well being to count every hour after that as "uncompensated." What good does that do me? Let's be real. At 90% of firms, the hour requirement is just a general guideline so they can hit the financials they want. You're not actually getting paid X to do 1950. You're getting paid X to work as many hours as it takes to service the client matters you've been given.

Maybe I'm just a sheeple, but counting "uncompensated hours" just sounds like a depressing way to practice.

Regardless, as America's greatest thinker has been heard saying, "It is what it is."

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by objctnyrhnr » Tue Aug 18, 2020 7:28 am

Sackboy wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 11:30 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 6:31 pm
For those of you billing well above the expectations, do you get really angry with each extra essentially uncompensated hour you bill? Even with above-market bonuses at my firm, working for a low $/hr after expectations leaves me upset
I find this view interesting.

When I was younger, I used to work for like $40 in an 8 hour day. The minimum wage was a nice $5.15/hr. I quite enjoyed my gigs. Now, I get paid several hundreds of thousands of dollars in the numerator and no amount of humanly possible hours in the denominator gets me remotely close to $5.15/hr. So, regardless of what I bill in a year, which is usually 2,400+, I chalk it up to a win.

I also think pegging your notion of fair compensation to whatever hour "requirement" your firm has stated is a great way to achieve unhappiness. My firm just tells me to bill, so that's what I do. I get paid several hundreds of thousands of dollars to bill. Some years it's up and some year it's down, but I put in my genuine effort to take all of the work that I can handle without a mental breakdown/destroying my life. That's good enough for me, and it seems to be good enough for my firm. Now, if I was at a firm that told me bill 1950 for your salary/bonus, I'd find it pretty toxic to my own well being to count every hour after that as "uncompensated." What good does that do me? Let's be real. At 90% of firms, the hour requirement is just a general guideline so they can hit the financials they want. You're not actually getting paid X to do 1950. You're getting paid X to work as many hours as it takes to service the client matters you've been given.

Maybe I'm just a sheeple, but counting "uncompensated hours" just sounds like a depressing way to practice.

Regardless, as America's greatest thinker has been heard saying, "It is what it is."
I like the above-poster’s take here

V30 in big city
Litigation midlevel
Technical target is 2000
In a given year the quality performers will do at least 2,100 but probably closer to 2200 or 2300.
People definitely get by for a couple years with more like 1800 or 1900 but they typically end up in house by virtue (I believe) of a soft push.
100 pro bono hours automatically count towards the cap, but if there is justification you can apply for credit to get more

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Aug 18, 2020 11:15 am

Firm Type: Boutique
Firm Name or Vault range: N/A
Practice Area: Commercial Litigation
Market: Philadelphia/Delaware
Billable Hours Minimum (& consequences for not meeting?): no minimum, do your part and don't say no to work if everyone else is busy
Allowed to count pro bono towards minimum? Unlimited Pro Bono
Informal Expectation? 1,800-2,000
Current Estimate for Year (or avg. from past years): 2,200+ (2020 annualized)

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Excellent117 » Tue Aug 18, 2020 12:14 pm

Sackboy wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 11:30 pm

I find this view interesting.

When I was younger, I used to work for like $40 in an 8 hour day. The minimum wage was a nice $5.15/hr. I quite enjoyed my gigs. Now, I get paid several hundreds of thousands of dollars in the numerator and no amount of humanly possible hours in the denominator gets me remotely close to $5.15/hr. So, regardless of what I bill in a year, which is usually 2,400+, I chalk it up to a win.

I also think pegging your notion of fair compensation to whatever hour "requirement" your firm has stated is a great way to achieve unhappiness. My firm just tells me to bill, so that's what I do. I get paid several hundreds of thousands of dollars to bill. Some years it's up and some year it's down, but I put in my genuine effort to take all of the work that I can handle without a mental breakdown/destroying my life. That's good enough for me, and it seems to be good enough for my firm. Now, if I was at a firm that told me bill 1950 for your salary/bonus, I'd find it pretty toxic to my own well being to count every hour after that as "uncompensated." What good does that do me? Let's be real. At 90% of firms, the hour requirement is just a general guideline so they can hit the financials they want. You're not actually getting paid X to do 1950. You're getting paid X to work as many hours as it takes to service the client matters you've been given.

Maybe I'm just a sheeple, but counting "uncompensated hours" just sounds like a depressing way to practice.

Regardless, as America's greatest thinker has been heard saying, "It is what it is."
This is absolutely not how I practice. I’m getting paid for my work up to my hours expectation/bonus requirement. My goal for each billable year is to do very high quality work, but to go over that hours number by as little as possible. I view each additional billable hour over that threshold as a little bit of a personal failure.

Then again, I have no desire to ever make partner, as ending up with the life of a law firm partner seems like a true worst case scenario from my perspective.

Also, the current estimates in this thread seem highly unrepresentative of the legal community as a whole right now.

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Aug 18, 2020 2:05 pm

Sackboy wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 11:30 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 6:31 pm
For those of you billing well above the expectations, do you get really angry with each extra essentially uncompensated hour you bill? Even with above-market bonuses at my firm, working for a low $/hr after expectations leaves me upset
I find this view interesting.

When I was younger, I used to work for like $40 in an 8 hour day. The minimum wage was a nice $5.15/hr. I quite enjoyed my gigs. Now, I get paid several hundreds of thousands of dollars in the numerator and no amount of humanly possible hours in the denominator gets me remotely close to $5.15/hr. So, regardless of what I bill in a year, which is usually 2,400+, I chalk it up to a win.

I also think pegging your notion of fair compensation to whatever hour "requirement" your firm has stated is a great way to achieve unhappiness. My firm just tells me to bill, so that's what I do. I get paid several hundreds of thousands of dollars to bill. Some years it's up and some year it's down, but I put in my genuine effort to take all of the work that I can handle without a mental breakdown/destroying my life. That's good enough for me, and it seems to be good enough for my firm. Now, if I was at a firm that told me bill 1950 for your salary/bonus, I'd find it pretty toxic to my own well being to count every hour after that as "uncompensated." What good does that do me? Let's be real. At 90% of firms, the hour requirement is just a general guideline so they can hit the financials they want. You're not actually getting paid X to do 1950. You're getting paid X to work as many hours as it takes to service the client matters you've been given.

Maybe I'm just a sheeple, but counting "uncompensated hours" just sounds like a depressing way to practice.

Regardless, as America's greatest thinker has been heard saying, "It is what it is."
Original quote OP -- I guess there's no chance I am giving my firm my best if there are others who are billing significantly less than me and are getting compensated the same. Your mentality seems much better but when I ask myself why I do what I do, there is only one answer -- money. Take that away and I would quit today.

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Aug 18, 2020 2:36 pm

Isn't this an argument for potentially doing compensation the way a firm like Jones Day does it, where there isn't a bonus and hours requirement, just a raise for the next year? When your compensation isn't tied to hitting an hours requirement, there's less of an incentive for people to hoard hours? At minimum, that was one thing I heard from JD people over the summer, when asked about the compensation system. (Obviously cabining the JD-specific problems.)

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by ksm6969 » Tue Aug 18, 2020 2:38 pm

Excellent117 wrote:
Tue Aug 18, 2020 12:14 pm
Sackboy wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 11:30 pm

I find this view interesting.

When I was younger, I used to work for like $40 in an 8 hour day. The minimum wage was a nice $5.15/hr. I quite enjoyed my gigs. Now, I get paid several hundreds of thousands of dollars in the numerator and no amount of humanly possible hours in the denominator gets me remotely close to $5.15/hr. So, regardless of what I bill in a year, which is usually 2,400+, I chalk it up to a win.

I also think pegging your notion of fair compensation to whatever hour "requirement" your firm has stated is a great way to achieve unhappiness. My firm just tells me to bill, so that's what I do. I get paid several hundreds of thousands of dollars to bill. Some years it's up and some year it's down, but I put in my genuine effort to take all of the work that I can handle without a mental breakdown/destroying my life. That's good enough for me, and it seems to be good enough for my firm. Now, if I was at a firm that told me bill 1950 for your salary/bonus, I'd find it pretty toxic to my own well being to count every hour after that as "uncompensated." What good does that do me? Let's be real. At 90% of firms, the hour requirement is just a general guideline so they can hit the financials they want. You're not actually getting paid X to do 1950. You're getting paid X to work as many hours as it takes to service the client matters you've been given.

Maybe I'm just a sheeple, but counting "uncompensated hours" just sounds like a depressing way to practice.

Regardless, as America's greatest thinker has been heard saying, "It is what it is."
This is absolutely not how I practice. I’m getting paid for my work up to my hours expectation/bonus requirement. My goal for each billable year is to do very high quality work, but to go over that hours number by as little as possible. I view each additional billable hour over that threshold as a little bit of a personal failure.

Then again, I have no desire to ever make partner, as ending up with the life of a law firm partner seems like a true worst case scenario from my perspective.

Also, the current estimates in this thread seem highly unrepresentative of the legal community as a whole right now.
I am no longer in biglaw, but I generally agree with this. The thought articulated by the OP that "I am just happy to make more than minimum wage" seems so twisted to me, but I could see why firms would obviously love that attitude, and if it makes the OP happy, then more power to him/her.

I do have another question for attorneys billing crazy hours, which is: do you really think quality of your work is unaffected by such long hours? Or is it just the type of work is such that quality doesnt matter/cant really be fucked up? When I was in big law, there was a partner who notoriously worked crazy hours before making partner, and every once in a while some of the work he did a few years before would come back to one of the juniors (e.g., for updating disclosures and whatnot), and it was pretty clear he wrote these things highly fatigued (just general sloppiness or incompleteness). Now I'm in-house, and I would be uneasy knowing that outside counsel is on their 12th working hour of the day completing some important work for me (just like I wouldnt want a pilot or doctor that is constantly working 70 hour weeks or whatever).

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Aug 18, 2020 2:48 pm

ksm6969 wrote:
Tue Aug 18, 2020 2:38 pm
Excellent117 wrote:
Tue Aug 18, 2020 12:14 pm
Sackboy wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 11:30 pm

I find this view interesting.

When I was younger, I used to work for like $40 in an 8 hour day. The minimum wage was a nice $5.15/hr. I quite enjoyed my gigs. Now, I get paid several hundreds of thousands of dollars in the numerator and no amount of humanly possible hours in the denominator gets me remotely close to $5.15/hr. So, regardless of what I bill in a year, which is usually 2,400+, I chalk it up to a win.

I also think pegging your notion of fair compensation to whatever hour "requirement" your firm has stated is a great way to achieve unhappiness. My firm just tells me to bill, so that's what I do. I get paid several hundreds of thousands of dollars to bill. Some years it's up and some year it's down, but I put in my genuine effort to take all of the work that I can handle without a mental breakdown/destroying my life. That's good enough for me, and it seems to be good enough for my firm. Now, if I was at a firm that told me bill 1950 for your salary/bonus, I'd find it pretty toxic to my own well being to count every hour after that as "uncompensated." What good does that do me? Let's be real. At 90% of firms, the hour requirement is just a general guideline so they can hit the financials they want. You're not actually getting paid X to do 1950. You're getting paid X to work as many hours as it takes to service the client matters you've been given.

Maybe I'm just a sheeple, but counting "uncompensated hours" just sounds like a depressing way to practice.

Regardless, as America's greatest thinker has been heard saying, "It is what it is."
This is absolutely not how I practice. I’m getting paid for my work up to my hours expectation/bonus requirement. My goal for each billable year is to do very high quality work, but to go over that hours number by as little as possible. I view each additional billable hour over that threshold as a little bit of a personal failure.

Then again, I have no desire to ever make partner, as ending up with the life of a law firm partner seems like a true worst case scenario from my perspective.

Also, the current estimates in this thread seem highly unrepresentative of the legal community as a whole right now.
I am no longer in biglaw, but I generally agree with this. The thought articulated by the OP that "I am just happy to make more than minimum wage" seems so twisted to me, but I could see why firms would obviously love that attitude, and if it makes the OP happy, then more power to him/her.

I do have another question for attorneys billing crazy hours, which is: do you really think quality of your work is unaffected by such long hours? Or is it just the type of work is such that quality doesnt matter/cant really be fucked up? When I was in big law, there was a partner who notoriously worked crazy hours before making partner, and every once in a while some of the work he did a few years before would come back to one of the juniors (e.g., for updating disclosures and whatnot), and it was pretty clear he wrote these things highly fatigued (just general sloppiness or incompleteness). Now I'm in-house, and I would be uneasy knowing that outside counsel is on their 12th working hour of the day completing some important work for me (just like I wouldnt want a pilot or doctor that is constantly working 70 hour weeks or whatever).
I agree that quality seems to dip when people are worked hard for a long period of time.

I replaced an associate who lateraled to another firm. He apparently billed 250+ hours a month. I reviewed some filings he did and it was nowhere near correct. I think he was just so burnt out towards the end that he just didn’t care at all.

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Re: ITT: Share info about your billable hour reqs/actual hours

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Aug 18, 2020 3:09 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Aug 18, 2020 2:36 pm
Isn't this an argument for potentially doing compensation the way a firm like Jones Day does it, where there isn't a bonus and hours requirement, just a raise for the next year? When your compensation isn't tied to hitting an hours requirement, there's less of an incentive for people to hoard hours? At minimum, that was one thing I heard from JD people over the summer, when asked about the compensation system. (Obviously cabining the JD-specific problems.)
I hate billing but I still prefer some sort of tangible benchmark to look at when trying to determine how I am performing. The issue is more the cliff nature of hours -- it should simply be base salary plus $x/hour bonus for your first 1,000 hours, second 1,000 hours and third 1,000 hours. Not to mention apparently JD just uses the black box to underpay most associates.

If hoarding work is an issue, you can adjust the pay past a certain hour threshold....or maybe partners could become better managers..

Seriously? What are you waiting for?

Now there's a charge.
Just kidding ... it's still FREE!


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