Second Opinion

Second Opinion Program

We help clients manage complex litigation, achieving balance between economic efficiency and long-term strategy goals


Litigation management has become more complex and challenging for in-house counsel in recent years for several reasons. Increasing emphasis on heightened efficiency and budget management, while very important goals, can occasionally lead to litigation staffing and short-term strategy choices that do not serve the company’s long-term interests. The increasing popularity of ADR has led to fewer and fewer litigators with courtroom trial experience. As a result, cases fester in protracted paperwork litigation rather than being aggressively pushed toward trial or other resolution. While outside counsel strive to meet the internal goals of its clients, the quality of representation and clarity of litigation goals occasionally suffer.

Fresh Eyes Offering a Second Opinion

Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP has had unique success in designing complex litigation docket programs that bring together the right mix of outside law firms, case management practices and mutual incentives to strike the necessary balance among efficiency, competency and the company’s long-term strategic goals. As a result, we are uniquely positioned to evaluate and improve upon an existing case or docket management structure. 

Our second opinion team includes veteran trial attorneys, law firm administrators, multidistrict litigation managers, dedicated researchers on litigation trends and law firm accounting specialists, among others. This blend of skills and personalities has helped companies identify and fix some of the most common recurring litigation inefficiencies and oversights, such as:

  • Significant overpayment on data management and analysis.
  • Failure of outside counsel to use the most effective and efficient attorney resource, even if that resource is from a different or “local” law firm.
  • Overlooking nontraditional motion opportunities that can quickly change litigation dynamics, such as motions proposing alternative methods of producing information.
  • Narrow focus on summary judgment strategy that overlooks trial preparation strategy.
  • Failure to collect all testimony and evidence needed to pursue summary judgment.
  • Defending cases reactively rather that pursuing a proactive strategy to defeat key claims such as class certification.
  • Outside counsel advocating for mediation and excessive settlement position because of lack of preparedness for trial.
  • “Alternative fee arrangements” that sound progressive on paper but do not genuinely share the risk between client and law firm.
  • Duplication of work or unsuccessful staffing due to law firm compensation or “credit-awarding” practices.
  • Failure of outside counsel at different firms to communicate with one another to ensure consistency in defense theory and strategic goals.
  • Ineffective “triaging” of new cases to determine importance and appropriate investment.

Our second opinion team has successfully reviewed single cases as well as nationwide litigation dockets to deliver results that reduce overall settlement payouts, attorney fee payments and the number of cases on a docket, such as:

  • A material reduction in overall litigation spend on a nationwide litigation docket over a several-year period.
  • A significant reduction in a company’s annual spend on e-discovery and data management.
  • Decreasing the number of pending cases on the docket over a multiyear period.

Our Data-Driven Analysis

We maintain a database that compiles docket information for class-action cases involving products and services of interest to firm clients. For each case, our database tracks:

  • The relevant product or service, putative class, parties, causes of action, counsel, federal district and judge; and
  • The case’s procedural posture, including: motion to dismiss; motion for class certification; motion for summary judgment; motion for preliminary approval of settlement; motion for final approval of settlement; motion for distribution; and plan of allocation.

We obtain the raw data for our database from regular monitoring of relevant legal industry publications and then reviewing publicly available docket information when necessary for more detail. We leverage this database to:

  • Predict the pace and course of future similar proceedings (based on variables such as industry, cause of action, judge and federal district);
  • Predict settlement amounts; and
  • Predict claim recovery amount.

Risk-Free “Second Look” Opportunity

We are proud of the resources and experience that we have built that position us to provide this unique service. We look forward to working with you to increase efficiency in your litigation management and reduce your overall litigation burden.


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