Signed Engagement Letter (Sidley) – 23 March 2015: Sidley's Provision of Legal Advice related to ICANN CCWG on Enhancing ICANN Accountability 23Mar2015_signed copia.pdf

Signed Engagement Letter (Adler) 25 March 2015: Adler & Colvin Fee Agreement signed by ICANN_dated25March2015.pdf

Scope of work


  • Adler & Colvin will be the primary source of advice on corporate governance law and California not-for-profit law. 
  • Sidley & Austin will be addressing international law and jurisdiction issues and any additional topic, as deemed appropriate.


Rules of Engagement & Working Methodologies 



 Law firms coordination

  • Sidley & Austin will be the coordinating firm. Both firms are expected to work on the different issues assigned to them but Sidley Austin will coordinate how the complementary and collaborative work will be developed by the firms. It is of the essence for the success of the group to avoid having duplicate work that may impact in duplicate billable hours.
  • Private coordination meetings between lawyers would be acceptable and desirable. Information should flow freely between law firms. 

Legal Subteam & Law firms coordination

  • Law firms report to the CCWG-Accountability and receive instructions from the legal executive sub team only. Legal Executive Subteam Members include: León Sánchez (lead);  Athina Fragkouli; Robin Gross; David McAuley; Sabine Meyer; Edward Morris; Greg Shatan and Samantha Eisner (support);. 
  • Should there be the need for a call between the available members of the Executive Legal Subteam and any of the law firms in order to address urgent matters without the ability to setup a public call, it will always be required to provide proper debrief to the open list in a timely fashion. This method will be exceptional.
  • A single mailing-list will be used. Legal sub team members who are not listed in the legal executive subteam have viewing rights to help streamline communications. Posting privileges should carry request privileges.
  • The mailing-list remains open to any observers. 
  • Activities and requests will be documented on the dedicated wiki page -


Conference calls

  • All weekly calls are to be recorded, transcribed and archived in the public wiki space.
  • Legal sub team and law firms coordination call will be held on Wednesdays: 14:00-15:00 UTC legal subteam only - 15:00-16:00 UTC legal subteam and lawyers. 
  • Calls are open to anyone. 


Requests for Advice

  • No individual outside the executive legal sub team should send requests to law firms.
  • Law firms are to alert the legal executive sub team of any requests made by individuals outside the legal executive sub team.
  • Only tasks assigned by memorandum will be subject for lawyers work. It is important that both law firms continue to follow the calls of the CCWG and the discussion in the mailing lists as there might be important topics or questions raised over the different discussions that might provide context to the assignments made by the legal sub-team.
  • Questions will continue to be gathered and compiled in a single document by the legal sub-team to keep track of the different concerns and questions raised within the larger group and they will be triaged in order to then be assigned formally to the lawyers.
  • On each assignment, the legal sub-team will do its best effort to provide as much context as possible to better guide the lawyers on the needs that the particular assignment is trying to address.
  • Requests for legal advice should be numbered consecutively for reference purposes. 
  • All requests will be archived in the public wiki space.

Legal Advice

  • While recognizing that Sidley Austin will be coordinating the work of both law firms with the aim of having a harmonized voice, law firms should state any deferring views they may have on any particular issue where this difference happens. Furthermore, should this difference in views happen, each law firm will be required to provide the rationale for its deferring view.
  • During face-to-face meetings/calls, high level legal advice should come in real time in reply to anyone raising a question within the Charter’s scope. 
  • Lawyers’ involvement with WP1, WP2 and WPST will be key for next steps as it is them that are building the proposals that will be subject to public comment. Therefore, the legal sub-team and the law firms should be able to provide these WPs with the tools they need to build feasible and legally viable proposals.
  • It is of the essence that as a next step the law firms analyze the different templates of powers and mechanisms attached herein in order to provide advice on whether those powers and mechanisms are legally viable in the first place and if not, which would be the alternatives. On a second phase, the law firms will be asked to advice on how these mechanisms and powers may be implemented in a holistic view of the accountability enhancement process.


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