This Is How to Start Your Own Law Firm
Have you ever considered starting your own law firm? While you might have the expertise in a field of law, you want to know the skills and steps needed for starting your own law firm.
This is a business like any other, and you’ve got to know the steps on how to establish it and run it successfully.
This guide will show you how to start your own law firm.
Let’s start with the benefits of starting a law firm:
What Your Own Law Firm Promises
When you run your own law firm you can choose the clients you wish to work with. You won’t have to stress about dealing with clients whom you don’t wish to help.
You can also choose the level of services you offer. You can offer a broad range of services in your field of law. Or, you can choose a few niche services in this field.
As with any business, you can create your workplace culture. You can choose whom to hire and pursue your own career goals. Such aspirations are never guaranteed when you work for another law firm.
So with that established, let’s start with preparing your law firm goals.
Law Firm Goals
Your first step has to be to write down your business plan. In this plan, you have to consider what you wish to accomplish with your law firm.
For example, you want to consider what type of life you wish to lead. Do you wish to scale your law firm as much as possible? If so, you can expect running the law firm will take up much of your time. You might want to focus on a few select clients so that you have more free time.
Your law firm goals should include the specific services you wish to offer. You can focus on consulting as well as fighting in court. Or you can choose to focus on one of these services.
You want to also write down the KPIs (key performance indicators) by which you will assess the progress of your law firm. For example, do you wish to increase your client base each year? Do you have specific financial goals? Are there particular laws and policies you wish to defend or implement?
It’s best to speak to existing law firms to see what their goals are. This can help you determine the ideal goals for your own law firm.
Once you have outlined your legal services, you have to consider how you’ll acquire clients.
The first step is to design a great website for your law firm. You can read more now on what makes a great website for legal services. You also want to consider setting up social media profiles to attract clients.
You should also create business cards and brochures for your law firm. Both of these will have your firm’s contact information. With the brochures, you can expand upon the legal services offered.
Whenever you go out, you should try to hand over these cards/brochures whenever possible. You can ask local businesses if you can keep a small stack of cards/brochures in their establishment.
When you acquire a few clients, you should also encourage them to refer other clients. Once you hire staff you can request for them to do the same.
One must also consider what an ideal client is. With a law firm, you can decide to do mass-marketing or selective marketing. For example, if you want a selective group of clients you want to focus on word-of-mouth marketing.
You can also have private social media accounts. With this, you can select whom you want to allow to “follow” you on your social profiles.
If your goal is to be as busy as possible, you want as many clients as you can. Some law firms, however, focus on a few clients who pay high fees. This way they can work less and still earn a lucrative income.
Next, you have to consider hiring staff. It’s always possible to run a law firm as one individual or with a few partners.
However, if you have a few key staff members on hand you work will be completed more efficiently. The level of productivity will certainly be greater with more team members.
You should first focus on non-legal staff members. These are the staff members that are crucial to any type of business. At the very least, you have to have at least one receptionist and one staff accountant.
The receptionist will focus on booking appointments, preparing notes for attorneys, and assisting other staff members.
The accountant will be responsible for bookkeeping, filing tax returns, payroll, and collections.
You can then hire a team of legal assistants to assist each of the attorneys. Legal assistants can keep track of cases, fill out paperwork, and prepare notes for a case.
Legal assistants usually complete the “busywork” while the attorney handles the more complex aspects of a case.
For general questions, a legal assistant can assist the client without the attorney having to get involved. You can also have a separate tier of legal assistants, that you refer to as ‘paralegals.’ As an attorney, you know that the definition of paralegal varies.
However, in your law firm a paralegal can be a legal assistant who handles more complex tasks. Once a legal assistant gains experience, you can give them more responsibilities. If they can handle such responsibilities, they can get promoted to paralegal status.
Finally, you have to find a way to finance a law firm. Investors and venture capitalist generally don’t finance such ventures.
You’ll have to focus on your own earnings, savings, and investments. You can also ask friends and family to help you. If you have other colleagues in the legal field, they might also want to help you finance your law firm.
As you get more clients, make sure to use a part of the firm’s income to expand it.
Now You Know How to Start Your Own Law Firm
Now that you know how to start your own law firm, you are ready to get started. Make sure you follow the steps in this guide to create your blueprint. Don’t be afraid to share the idea with your colleagues as they can serve as your support system.
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