Reed Smith counts ‘sustainability hours’ towards billing targets

New 25-hour coverage thought of to be ‘industry-first’

US legislation agency Reed Smith has rolled out a brand new coverage that rewards its legal professionals engaged on sustainability initiatives.

The coverage was introduced this week as a part of the agency’s International Environmental Sustainability Plan 2024 and one it considers “may be the first of its kind among global law firms”.

From subsequent month the agency’s legal professionals, together with these based mostly within the UK, can rely as much as 25 hours of management, advocacy, coaching and improvement work tied to environmental sustainability towards their billable hour targets. This allowance types a part of the agency’s present 140 hours of billable credit score put aside every year for non-billable work. Reed Smith legal professionals in London have an annual billing goal of 1,700 hours, our Companies Most Record reveals.

Casey Ryan, Reed Smith’s international head of personnel, stated: “The expansion of the billable-hours policy to include sustainability projects is another enhancement of our Associate Life initiative, which enables our attorneys to work on issues of critical importance while building leadership skills and expanding their skill sets. These experiences will further support their legal and professional development and yield key advances in support of sustainability.”

Qualifying work might embrace serving as a pacesetter on the agency’s inner “Green Team”, organising or attending sustainability-focused conferences and initiatives, engaged on shopper partnerships or becoming a member of teams such because the Internet Zero Attorneys Alliance, Reed Smith stated in a press release.

For a while now legislation companies have given fee-earners credit score towards professional bono work and different actions not essentially associated to shopper issues, equivalent to range and inclusion, tech and innovation.

Again in 2018 Reed Smith was one of many first legislation companies to permit legal professionals to be rewarded for time spent on innovation; they will put aside 50 hours for such initiatives. The agency, like others, additionally has a 50-hour allowance for D&I efforts.

Reed Smith’s two-year plan is targeted on decreasing carbon emissions by 20% by 2024 and making all merchandise used throughout its international places of work recyclable or reusable. The agency scored an A* for eco-friendliness in our newest Trainee & Junior Lawyer Survey.

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