Keen le­gal minds must find no re­lief on the loo

Sunday Times - - WORLD -

LAWYERS at a top in­ter­na­tional firm were told to charge clients even when they were tak­ing lava­tory breaks — be­cause they would still be think­ing about work.

It was re­vealed ear­lier this year that top law firms are charg­ing clients as much as £1 000 (about R17 300) an hour, so a six-minute lava­tory break could cost £100.

The pol­icy at Nabarro, a com­mer­cial firm, which was leaked to le­gal web­site Rol­lOnFri­day, read: “Any short break, eg cof­fee break, of up to six min­utes should still be recorded to the mat­ter you are work­ing on, on the ba­sis that you would still be think­ing about it.”

At the time, the firm said such ap­proaches were com­mon prac­tice. How­ever, a spokesman said on Fri­day that the clause had been re­moved be­cause “it does not re­flect the way we bill clients”.

The leak prompted a bar­rage of com­ments from lawyers. One said: “I know a solic­i­tor who recorded time for when he was in the bath think­ing about clients.”

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