Simpson Suit Spotlights In-House Counsel's Clashing Roles

By Sam Reisman (October 4, 2018, 7:18 PM EDT) -- A recently settled nonpayment suit between a legal recruiter and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP shined a light on the importance for in-house law firm counsel of delineating between administrative and legal functions, in order to avert a potentially thorny discovery dispute in litigation.

At issue in the Simpson Thacher case were 28 emails between firm partners, including two "co-administrative partners" who doubled as "firm counsel," that the firm withheld from production on the basis of attorney-client privilege. According to multiple legal ethics experts, the case demonstrates potential pitfalls of not having a concretely established firm general counsel office that is...

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