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family communication

 

Claim form Line 1 or 23 - Where does family communication time go?

Effective Date: 04/04/08

Time spent communicating with family members or others to facilitate client communication should be billed on line 1 and is compensable when supported by an explanation that describes the circumstantial need for third-party communication. Communication with third-parties may be particularly justifiable when representing clients who, do not speak English, are very young, suffer from mental illness, or have been convicted of a sex offense.

Other types of family communications that promote the attorney-client relationship but are unnecessary to the handling of the direct appeal (e.g., contacts with family members for the purpose of reassuring them, with prison officials on a client’s medical condition, or with the client’s attorney in a civil case) should be claimed on line 23 but is minimally compensable and only when a detailed explanation is provided.