Who We Are


Who We Are

Contact us at: 1-847-595-1652 or info@leigh-galese.com

Founded by CEO and Managing Member, Mari Henry Leigh (bio below), Mari Henry Leigh & Associates, LLC dba Leigh-galese Legal Cost Consulting is a group of talented, highly experienced attorneys and analysts who provide legal counsel and litigation services to clients embroiled in fee disputes, including prevailing party litigation, independent counsel disputes, billing fraud or malfeasance and/or other legal cost recovery or allocation actions.

We also provide our clients comprehensive litigation management and legal operations services, including litigation strategies, prospective cost containment and recovery/reimbursement initiatives (including ESI-discovery initiatives), budgeting, predictive modeling, data analytics and financial reporting on mass-tort, multi-district or multi-jurisdictional, class action and other complex litigation.  We are highly facile in project, process and change management and can offer customized technology and artificial intelligence (AI) solutions to enhance your existing enterprise software, including e-billing, invoice review and claims management software solutions and extranet services.  We are highly adept at vetting and negotiating master service contracts with litigation support vendors.

We also serve as consulting and testifying experts on all aspects of legal fees. With more than 50 years combined experience behind us, and over 200 engagements and a dozen testimonies to our credit, we bring the perfect blend of talent and technology to the table to solve your most complex and difficult legal fee and cost issues.  Our clients are forward thinking, pioneers of law department, legal operations, insurance and law firm management for whom the status quo is simply not an option. Our mission is to enhance - not replace - your existing resources.  Our team frees you up to do mission-critical work and/or provides the necessary independent expertise to enhance a resolution to a potentially litigated fee dispute matter. 

We have routinely delivered seven and eight figure savings in litigated matters and projects and initiatives that we have reviewed and/or managed. Where necessary, we provide expert testimony on your behalf or we serve as independent experts or third-party neutrals.  Our results are credible and reliable and will withstand third-party scrutiny.  Whether you are entangled in a fee dispute where you need litigation counsel, have a single engagement designed to review and challenge the reasonableness and necessity of unanticipated legal costs, or a more global initiative to drill down and evaluate your entire legal spend portfolio, we are the team to engage.

 For a more comprehensive list of the solutions we offer, please refer to our website section entitled: “WHAT WE DO.”

Our Leadership 

Our team of talented attorneys and experienced analysts is led by our Founder, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Member, Mari Henry Leigh.  Our firm is 100% woman owned, controlled and managed.  The ability of our leadership to work cohesively as a team and with those they lead is what drives successful outcomes and provides the optimal client experience. 

Mari Henry Leigh
Founder, CEO and Managing Member

1 (847) 595-1652

Mari has more than three decades of experience as an attorney litigating or managing complex litigation on a wide variety of substantive legal disciplines and more than 23 years experience in legal fees disputes, litigation management and law firm and law department or claims management operations, including co-founding a predecessor practice.  A pioneer in the industry, Mari provides corporate clients with comprehensive litigation management and legal operations services, including the efficient execution and implementation of litigation strategies, the implementation of prospective cost containment and cost recovery/reimbursement initiatives (including ESI-discovery initiatives) and budgeting, predictive modeling and financial reporting on mass-tort, multi-jurisdictional litigation and other complex litigation. Referred to as the ‘‘Granddaddy of legal bill review’’ and ‘‘one of the first attorneys people go to [on billing and litigation management issues]’’ by colleagues and clients, Mari is highly skilled at data analytics and has conducted hundreds of legal audits involving billions of dollars in legal costs over the course of her career.  One client has described her as "utterly brilliant" and an "expert in her niche market" and described the practice she has built as "very impressive."

In addition to serving as a testifying expert witness, Mari has also served as a facilitator, hearing officer and arbitrator of attorney fee disputes. She has also served on the Eligibility Committee of a mass-tort settlement.  In 2012, Mari served as Special Counsel for the United States before the Iran-United States Claims Tribunal in The Hague, assisting the US team with briefing and attorney fee damage analysis. 

When not serving her clients, Mari likes to give back to the profession. She is a frequent author, speaker and instructor on issues involving reasonable attorneys’ fees, legal cost controls and litigation management, data analytics, attorney ethics, attorney-client privilege and issues related to the defense of product liability claims. She is a co-author of a chapter on “Budgeting and Controlling Costs” in a multi-volume treatise on “Successful Partnering Between Inside and Outside Counsel"  and is the author of  a self-published handbook on the right to, and selection of, independent counsel in insurance claims.

Mari is or has been a member of many professional organizations, including the Chicago Bar Association’s Professional Fees Committee Claims (past chair) and The Claims and Litigation Management Alliance (past board member).  Mari serves as a Chancellor and is on the Faculty of The CLM’s Litigation Management Institute. The LMI is a certification program for attorneys and claims professionals and is designed to bridge the gap between legal theory and business and to certify candidates in the specific area of litigation management. Successful graduates earn the designation of Certified Litigation Management Professional (CLMP). Mari is also a member of the International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC) as well as a member of the American Bar Association (ABA). 

Mari obtained her J.D. from Case Western University School of Law, where she graduated Order of The Coif, and obtained her B.A. in Communications from Purdue University.