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Maybe John Berryhill  –  Dec 14, 2018 3:59 PM

“Yet as a result of RDNH findings and any publicity related to them, potential clients researching an attorney or a firm prior to entering into an engagement may learn of an attorney’s or a firm’s involvement in an abusive filing and may choose not to move forward with the engagement.”

I’m not so sure about that bit in an otherwise bang-on piece.  There have been a couple of times over the years where I have been asked to consult on filing a UDRP proceeding, have informed the client that on the facts I could not in good conscience take their money on a meritless case, and the client has found counsel with a different conscience-per-dollar ratio.  They end up wasting even more money that way, but there is certainly a market in the type of legal counsel which consists of charging people to tell them they want to hear, instead of what you really think.

It’s tough to figure out, on balance, whether the bulk of RDNH cases are lawyer-driven or client-driven, though.  As you point out, there seem to be certain firms who are frequent fliers - and UDRP cases are only the visible tip of the iceberg as Zak or anyone else knows, who regularly sees the garden variety “why not send a c&d;letter anyway” threats or the frequently entertaining results of automated c&d;generation systems. 

An enterprising associate at a large firm can certainly keep busy by alerting the firm’s clients to “problems” they didn’t know they had, and that associate is just as likely to be handed the thankless task of ginning up a creative UDRP filing on bad facts on behalf of one of the firm’s mainstay clients when told to do so by a partner.  It’s certainly understandable that the ideal of exercising independent professional judgment is challenging in that circumstance, but one might at least write it up and get that partner to sign off on it instead of taking that bullet on an internet which doesn’t forget.

Your point is indeed very well taken, Zak Muscovitch  –  Dec 14, 2018 9:38 PM

Your point is indeed very well taken, John! Many thanks, and thank you for contributing your insightful observations and sublime wit as per usual!

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