Practice Pointers When Hiring Local Counsel
• Whether being retained on behalf of a Plaintiff or a Defendant, an attorney hired as local counsel should be experienced and familiar with the court in which the case is pending and knowledgeable of the local rules and customs that apply. Given almost 30 years of practicing in the Wisconsin courts, our law firm will often know the opposing attorney, the opposing in-house counsel or the specific court in which the matter is pending. We put all of this to work for our clients when we are retained as local counsel.
• The terms of retaining local counsel should be put in writing just as any other retention of an attorney’s services. Our firm will ask that a written retainer agreement be entered to expressly set forth the roles of the primary counsel and our firm’s lawyers.
• The specific undertaking or project should be defined and confirmed in writing. If an out-of-state client has interrelated matters pending in court or at issue, the parameters of local counsel’s involvement in each matter should be specified in writing.
• Your local counsel should have significant trial experience before both juries and courts. Our firm has found that cases resolve much quicker and on better terms when opposing counsel understands that they are facing a firm with significant trial and complex litigation experience. Our firm has that.
• Local counsel should be readily available whether by telephone, email or by web-based conferencing. Our lawyers are accessible to effectively and efficiently serve our clients and their lawyers through our role as local counsel.