Sharpen Your Pencil: The Lateral Partner Questionnaire (LPQ)

The LPQ or the lateral partner questionnaire is the most daunting step in the due diligence process for a partner moving to a new law firm. It’s an arduous task, don’t delay. Get it done.

Sharpen Your Pencil: The Lateral Partner Questionnaire (LPQ)

Be Honest & Thorough

Do not skip any sections. Do not be vague. Accurately detail any late taxes, bankruptcy, bar discipline, criminal history, malpractice, discrimination claims, and investigations. It’s very important to begin your relationship with your future partnership with integrity and open transparency. 

Most LPQs require a minimum of 2 years prior history, and some as much as 5 years. Pulling this information together can be a challenge. Here is a quick list of subjects you will likely address in written or verbal form:


  • Bar Admissions
  • Courts
  • CLE’s

Compensation History & Future Expectations

  • Your current employer
  • Billable Hours Recorded
  • Standard Billing Rate
  • Average Billed Rate
  • Amount Billed
  • Amount Collected
  • Tax Returns
  • Bankruptcy
  • Portability of Clients


Previous Employer History

  • References and Reason(s) for Leaving
  • Discipline and Sanctions
  • Claims and Litigation
  • Criminal history
  • Malpractice Claims
  • Discrimination Claims
  • Government Investigations

Business Relationships

  • Professional Organizations
  • Board or Officer Positions
  • Pro Bono
  • Conflicts of Interest
  • Client Financial Situations
  • Restrictions / Limitations Based on Partnership Agreements

Value Proposition: Business Plan

Detail your business development plan addressing prospective clients and estimated revenues as well as non-client referral sources, unique skills sets and existing client base. Be sure to include any other information that is relevant or of value to the new partner candidacy.

Hire a Top Legal Recruiter

Don’t lie to me. Don’t inflate or overestimate your book of business. This is the quickest way to sour your new partnership. During due diligence or after being hired, more times than often any inaccuracies in your qualifications and past performance will come up. When time comes to cut back, you’ll be at the top of that list.  

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About On Balance Search Consultants

On Balance offers great insight and industry intelligence. Shari Davidson, president of On Balance Search Consultants, advises law firms on how to take a firm to the next level and helps rising talent make the transition to the right law firm.

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Please note that the content of this blog does not constitute legal advice and is only intended for the educational purpose of the reader.  Please consult your legal counsel for specifics regarding your specific circumstances and the laws in your states pertaining to social media and any legal restrictions regarding the law.

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