"or the scientific methods used to arrive at this conclusion"
Absent a method, it's just a number. I've never counted, personally, since I don't see the point. The one statistic I did look at once was "number of RDNH findings" at RDNH.com. At the time I checked, ESQwire.com, the firm of Ari Goldberger and Jason Schaeffer, were about tied with me, but I believe they've had quite a few more recently. Does it mean anything? I doubt it. It's just a function of the cases with which one is entrusted.
Or, take someone who has had two cases and won both, versus someone who has had 300 cases and lost five. Is a 100% "win" record better than a 98% "win" record in that context? Who knows. Each case is different, although its pretty unusual these days that I see one that doesn't fit a pattern I've seen before.
When someone is conducting a beauty pageant to select counsel, it can be kind of amusing. I've seen a case or two I thought were fairly definite losers, and told the prospective client that I could not in good faith take their money on a reasonable chance of success. Then, a month later, I see that Zak Muscovitch (muscovitch.com) won the case. I told Zak about that the other day, and he said "I had the same thing happen with Karen Bernstein!" (karenbernsteinlaw.com)
Incidentally, if you are consulting with one lawyer who tells you "Well, it could go this way, or it could go that way... this argument might be good, and this other argument might not be so good" and then you consult with another lawyer who says, "I'm going to win your case!" - do NOT
, under any circumstances, hire that second lawyer. Some people will hire people who tell them what they want to hear, and some lawyers are good at doing that, and not much else.
My other favorite "lawyer beauty pageant" experience was this one guy who sent me the complaint, sent me some background info to my questions, and then during the followup call when I was going through the pros and cons, kept saying, "But Stephen Lieberman said...." Not every lawyer is going to see your case the same way, and Steve is another reliable heavy-hitter in these things. But I kept thinking that if I wanted a discussion with Steve, I can certainly do that. Steve and I always make a point to go on a bike ride whenever we're in the same place and time. I think I ended up telling the guy that if he liked Steve's ideas so much, he should hire him. (aplegal.com)
One point not addressed from the OP is cost. Everyone has their own approach to that. I think there is a no-name outfit in the UK which sends out spam emails for flat rate UDRP defenses. By "no-name", I mean whomever runs the thing operates under a trade name and does not identify an actual attorney. I've seen some craptacular work by that operation, but can they win a drop-dead simple case? Probably. Hey, there are cases where the Respondent doesn't file a response at all and wins. It's hard to beat free!
But typically, I like to see the complaint, discuss relevant background facts with the prospective client, and come up with some idea of how much work might be involved. Some cases are, as noted above, drop-dead simple, and you'd have to put effort into losing them. Some cases are a long, tedious slog, and there's an Energizer Bunny on the opposing side who keeps filing additional stuff. What I like about those types is that - and I think any experienced UDRP defense attorney agrees - the overwhelming majority of "supplemental" filings made by complainants in UDRP proceedings are counterproductive for them. But I can usually get a feel for whether this is a three-hour no-brainer copy/paste from a very similar prior case; whether the case is an "interesting" one, which raises new or complex issues; or whether the case has a "fun factor" of some kind. Completely aside from the merits, time, cost, or whatever, some cases are a lot of fun, and I have a steep discount for that which drives the rest of my crew nuts. It might be a three-hour case, a fifteen hour case, or one of the few I do once in a while where the client really can't pay much, but I'd just hate to see them lose. I think I hit my quota on those for this year already.
Another thing you can't ignore is, "is this someone I'm comfortable working with". Different lawyers, different styles, different personalities. I should probably write a post for lawyers who do UDRP's along the lines of "I'm looking for a good client" some day. Some people enjoy working with me, some people find me frustrating as hell. Your mileage may vary.
One thing I can recommend NOT
doing is "How about if I write my own response and have you look it over and mark it up." There is, seriously, no greater time suck in the world than that. It is hard to explain, but if you've ever had experience as, say, a contractor who has to come in and fix someone's DIY project instead of just starting fresh, you will know exactly what I mean. I can go into depth on that some other time, but those types of propositions have driven me bananas more times than I care to count.
So, who have I left out? I always get nervous about listing good UDRP lawyers, because I'm always afraid there is someone I might fail to mention, and they won't buy me drinks anymore. In the thread, we've had, in no particular order, Zak, Enrico, Steve, Karen, Brett, David, Ari & Jason, there's Paul Keating (law.es), John Di Giacomo (revisionlegal.com), Eugene Rome (romeandassociates.com), Adam Taylor (adlexsolicitors.co.uk), Marco Randazza (randazza.com) and I believe that the Great and Wise Derek Newman (www.newmanlaw.com
) might still occasionally descend from the heights of Olympus to sully his masterful hands with a UDRP defense. Derek is also the best looking domain attorney, if that's important to you.
So, that's 13 names, you got 20 days, and you can't imagine how we are always thrilled to get into a low bid contest. We can't imagine it either.
And, I assure you, there is a lawyer somewhere who has never handled a UDRP case, would really like to get his or her hands on one, and is itching to do a spectacular job with it. Maybe you'll find the future 'best domain lawyer' and you'll be able say you knew them when. Just do us all a favor and make sure it's not someone who will turn into an insufferable self-promoting asshole in the process.