In 2014 the LEDES Oversight Committee released Revised Timekeeper Classification codes that apply to all LEDES standards. As part of this release, all LEDES format documentation and sample files have been updated to refer to this new external document.
The Revised Timekeeper Classifications can be found here: LEDES Revised Timekeeper Classifications Reference Document 8-2014
In creating the revised classifications, the following items were considered:
- Classifications were needed for all types of legal vendors who have been asked or may be asked to ebill.
- Classifications were considered for employees of legal vendors who (1) track time that is billed to clients and (2) need to access the ebilling system for administrative purposes but who may not bill time on client matters.
- Clients should have the ability to select the types of timekeeper classifications for whom services will be reimbursed. Clients should clearly state their intentions on the usage of classifications. For example, if the client does not accept the Librarian classification, the client must also plainly state that Librarian services are not allowed to be submitted using any other timekeeper classification.
- Classifications were added if they provided insight into the timekeeper’s billing rate or would provide additional insight for analysis purposes. For example, Legal Assistant (an unlicensed professional) versus Paralegal (a professional with an official certification or license issued by a jurisdictional authority) were included as one would expect a Paralegal’s billing rate to be higher.
- Classifications were included for global law firms that may not be used within the US.
- Junior and Senior distinctions, to the extent used, are left to the discretion of the legal vendor instead of providing guidelines on what constitutes Junior or Senior. It was felt that any guidance provided in this regard would not be consistently followed and that legal vendors would be more likely to use their internal distinctions.
- The classifications clearly distinguish between regular and contract/temporary timekeepers. For Contract/temporary timekeepers there is only a distinction between attorneys and non-attorneys.
- The classification code usage has been changed for all formats, utilizing a new 6 digit code that is within the schema allowed in all LEDES formats.
- The documentation identifies which types of legal vendors may use each classification. This should be taken at face value and not manipulated by clients.
- The documentation provides expansive definitions on the usage of each timekeeper classification to standardize usage.