Highly Qualified Woman Accepts At or Below Market Rate for Legal Work - Rolling Stone
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Highly Qualified Woman Accepts at-or-Below Market Rate for Legal Work

Sen. Elizabeth Warren earned $1.9 million over more than two decades of legal work, approximately $75,000 per year

Elizabeth Warren

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Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s (D-Mass.) presidential campaign released documents Sunday detailing the legal consulting work Warren did while she was a professor at Harvard University, University of Pennsylvania, and elsewhere. The fees Warren collected over more than two decades amounted to $1.9 million, or approximately $75,000 per year between 1986 and 2012, when she became a senator.

According to Warren spokesperson Kristen Orthman, the released documents contain “all the income she earned from each case that we have been able to determine from public records, Elizabeth’s personal records, and other sources.” The records include compensation for over 30 cases as well as a dozen cases where the campaign said she did not accept compensation. The campaign also said it did not have records of compensation for five cases.

The records include work Warren did for former Getty Oil directors around the Texaco bankruptcy in 1987 and for Rabobank, a Dutch bank that was a creditor in the Enron bankruptcy. She also worked on a number of asbestos cases, helping set up billions in trusts for victims and their families.

In one court case, Warren was asked to defend the $675 per hour rate she was charging. She responded: “I have been working, writing, lecturing, and consulting in the bankruptcy field for twenty-two years. My fee is commensurate with other professionals of similar experience. I do not share in [law firm] partnership profits.”

As the Washington Post reported in May, that fee was “at or below market rate” and was “less than what some law firm partners charged” for the same kind of work.

The document release comes as Warren is engaged in back and forth with fellow candidate Pete Buttigieg around his closed-door donor events. Warren has called for transparency around his donors and his consulting work with McKinsey & Company, while Buttigieg has pressured Warren to release her tax returns from when she did corporate work. Buttigieg released some details of his McKinsey work on Friday but said he was bound by an NDA that prevented him from disclosing more.

Orthman said the campaign chose to release details of Warren’s corporate work instead of tax returns because the returns would not itemize her income like these records do. Warren had already released 11 years of tax returns.

In This Article: Elizabeth Warren


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