Your client doesn't want to be double-billed for the same work, and you don’t want to devote time to redundancies. How do you comply with your ethical duties while not duplicating all the efforts of lead counsel?
Establish clear demarcation of responsibilities with lead counsel. For example, agree on who will do what research, draft the complaint, respond to court notices and orders, draft pleadings, communicate with the client, and appear in court (subject to local rules). Agree on whether you will be copied on all emails and letters between lead counsel and the client.
In addition to assisting in lead counsel’s pro hac vice application, you should review the draft of the complaint and drafts of all pleadings and briefs. Give guidance about compliance with local rules and applicable law, and provide insight about such matters as possible causes of action and available relief, long-arm jurisdiction, process servers, idiosyncrasies of judges, and their unique chamber practices.
The bottom line: When serving as local counsel, comply with all applicable procedural and ethical requirements, and coordinate with lead counsel, thereby maximizing your team effort to achieve your client’s objectives cost-effectively.