Mattern 2020 e-Discovery & Litigation Support Survey Results Helps Firms Compare and Improve Recovery Models
USA/Canada News

Mattern logoLaw firm back and middle office  consulting firm, Mattern, announces the results of the first ever e-Discovery & Litigation Support Cost Recovery Survey (“Survey”) are in.  

Litigation support is a growing area of client service in a market that has otherwise experienced stagnant demand over all. While strategies vary widely, some firms recover more than double what others are, with the recovery of hard costs outpacing soft cost recovery at all firms. Learn more here.

Mattern’s 2020 e-Discovery and Litigation Support Survey includes in excess of 30  participants, the majority of which were Am Law 200 ranked firms or higher.  The Survey investigates in-house, outsourced and hybrid recovery models and captures key data to illustrate market trends and success in terms of recovery rates of various models firms are deploying, including these:

  • How firms are structuring litigation support and e-Discovery departments
  • Why firms outsource, insource or leverage hybrid models 
  • Methodologies firms use to recover these costs
  • What charges clients pushing back on,refusing to pay and more

The Survey notes the growing demand for services and shows the vast majority of firms provide litigation support services onsite with in-house labor.  When firms outsource these services, they do so to improve expense recovery, expertise and security. 


Notably, litigation support and e-Discovery recovery strategies vary widely, with industry leaders recovering more than double what other firms are. Modifications to a law firm’s recovery model for litigation support services can increase the firm’s recovery by 35%.   

The recovery of soft costs for in-house services, however, are more difficult to recover than hard costs when outsourced. This aligns with other areas of law firm cost recovery where in-house generated soft charges still face the hurdle of being written off by attorneys before making it to the invoice and billed to the client. Whereas, hard costs are charged and billed at a much higher rate.  In all cases, the recovery of what is billed to the client is consistent whether recovering soft or hard costs.

 “We are proud to consistently deliver the industry’s most trusted information regarding cost recovery practices, and expanding this important practice to the growing areas of litigation support and e-Discovery,” comments Rob Mattern, President of Mattern.  “Even more so, we are delighted to provide this data to the Survey participants and help them develop their recovery models that better align the client and firm’s needs.”


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