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How to Manage Class Action Lawsuits in Clio Manage

Objective:

  • Matter management workflow for matters with many plaintiffs against one defendant (e.g. employment law) 
  • Tracking class action lawsuits 

Environment:

  • Clio Manage 

Additional Information:

  • Before creating the matter, we recommend creating a Matter Custom Field as a Default field for all matters, to help organize all the matters related to the defendant (e.g. Company Defendant). 

Procedure:

Matter Creation

Create a new matter for each plaintiff you are representing in the class action:

  1. Click the green Create New button 
  2. Select Matter
  3. Enter the mandatory fields:
    • The Client (individual plaintiff)
    • Matter Description (can include the defendant name) and
    • Permissions (recommend selecting Everyone)
  4. In the Custom Fields section, enter the name of the defendant (e.g. Acme Co) in your "Company Defendant" Matter Custom Field 
  5. If applicable, in the Billing Preferences section, update the Billing type to Contingency and enter the fee percentage
  6. Click Save Matter 

Note: it's important to be consistent with how you enter the defendant's name in the Custom Field otherwise you may have issues searching for it later!

Matter Management

To see a list of all matters in this Class Action that are related to this defendant, filter the Matters list by the "Company Defendant" Custom Field: 

  •  
  1. Navigate to the Matters section in the left main menu
  2. In the top right hand corner of the Matters table, click Filters and scroll to the bottom of the Filters criteria
  3. If not already there, click Add Custom Field and select "Company Defendant" from the list then enter the defendant (e.g. Acme Co) 
  4. Click Apply Filters 

Note: Once you're done viewing the list, don't forget to Clear Filters so the next time you take a look at your Matter List, you can see all Open Matters!  

Tracking Expenses

When incurring costs on behalf of each plaintiff in the class action suit, log these as Expense entries for the specific plaintiff's matter. This will ensure that the final statement, once a fee is rewarded, deducts the plaintiff's costs alongside the predetermined legal fee percentage. 

Billing Workflow

Watch this video playlist to learn about the steps in a Contingency Fee Billing Workflow or read this comprehensive guide. (if applicable).

In addition to the workflow in the video linked above, when entering the reward amount for the class action lawsuit matters:

  1. Calculate the total each plaintiff would receive (e.g. reward of $1,000,000 with 10 plaintiffs would entitle each plaintiff to a $100,000) 
  2. Record the Reward in Clio: 
    • Total amount for a single plaintiff as the award in each Matter (e.g. $100,000)
    • Recommend entering the total class action reward in the Description (e.g. Courts awarded $1,000,000 across all plaintiffs. This amount has been dispersed amongst 10 plaintiffs). 
  3. Click Generate Bill and then View Bill to have Clio create a statement for the plaintiff 
    • This Bill acts as a statement of record that includes the legal fee percentage deducted, line items for costs, etc. 
  4. Proceed with the regular billing workflow to approve and send the bill to your client  

 

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