Sunday, August 23, 2009

Bad recession in Phoenix - but not if you're a lawyer

The recession hit Arizona pretty bad and it leads the U.S. in foreclosures. But it's no recession in legal firms down there as Judge Reinhold Baum's courtroom is filled with legal briefs. This week the tally hit 665. Now how much in legal fees has been incurred to produce this stack of documents has yet to be revealed by I can guess. It's big.

If the documents required on average 5 hours of lawyers time to produce at $300 per hour, that works out to about $1,500 per document. Multiply that by 665 documents and you have $997,500 or just under a $1 million. And I think I'm being conservative.

If this drags for several years as the parties appeal, the legals fees will be in the millions. So while many people are saying no one wins in this prolonged dispute, the truth is the lawyers always win.