Having worked at a law firm for a couple of years, or just passed your Bar Exam, you may want to start a law firm yourself. However, not everyone can make their firm successful. So, follow our guidelines as we run through the essentials.
Choose The Best Name
When looking to start a law firm of your own, picking the right name is important. This is because the most successful law firms have a name that’s unique.
This would set you apart from your rivals, and make you stand out. This might be hard to come up with because you could end up choosing a name that’s already in use. That’s why you can use the internet for ideas.
Keep looking up names you think of, seeing if there are any others with it. If there are little to none, you’re on the right track.
What’s more, you have to watch out for things like “___ And Associates” or “____ Group”. This is because they can be illegal.
If you’re the sole proprietor, using ‘Group’ in your name is breaking the law. If there are no other ‘Associates’ but you, having it in your name will be breaking the law too.
Hatch Up A Business Plan
A business plan is needed for any startup, not just a law firm. It’s vital that you speak to someone who’s an expert in financial matters as they’ll help you track how much your expenses should be, and what goals you’ll have to achieve to grow.
One of the most important things when creating a business plan is to not overshoot. You may think this is fine, but it’s not as you’re planning goals that will stress you out, making you give up on your dream.
Not overshooting is very important with law firms as you may take up too many cases to reach your end goal. This is disastrous as your attention will be very divided, leaving clients unsatisfied. As you’re new, this will tarnish your name.
Build A Family
If you want to be successful, you need to treat your staff very well.
The lawyers, apprentices, and clerks you hire will not want to leave your company when you treat them well. Such a thing is vital as there are bigger, more influential law firms out there. In fact, your workers are taking a chance on you as they don’t know how successful your new firm will be.
If you treat them like family, the firm will be close to their hearts so they’ll be loyal to you. This would increase the chances of your firm winning more cases, and help you make profits.
You Need To Specialize
To make sure your law firm is as successful as possible, you’ll need to specialize. Not only should you pick a niche, but you’ll also have to pick a subsection within it.
This will cause people to respect your name as you’re refining your expertise, helping you stand out even more.
For example, you could specialize in workplace disputes. So, your specialty will be in handling wrongful terminations.
Location, Location, Location!
The office should be in a big city or town as you’ll be surrounded by a huge pool of potential clients. This is especially true for personal injuries as there are countless ways people can get injured in the city.
Not only should it be in the city, but your office should also be in a spot that has good transport. The ample roadways allow people to get to you with ease, especially those who are not from the area.
While on the topic, how your office looks is important as well. It shouldn’t be obvious that you’ve just started. This will make clients not want to work with you due to your lack of a track record. You can help with this by making your firm look as professional as possible.
Such a thing can be achieved by some pretty professional interior designing. Thankfully, you don’t have to hire anyone for this.
One of the most important things to make your office look professional is the size of your building. Although you may not be able to afford a building on the larger size, this will really beef up your street cred so think of it as an investment.
Investment Is Key
Your clerks and apprentices are probably studying law. By offering them extra help and resources for this, you’ll be helping them get their Bar or equivalent qualification.
Ultimately, this would save you cash as you would have bar-certified lawyers, and not have to hire them externally. The money you can save would help a lot in the long run, which can be used for your firm’s growth.
As a lawyer, building a client base is difficult. This is because clients tend to be loyal to a specific firm. This is why the best way you can gather people is through referrals.
If a client’s trusted lawyer tells them about you, they’ll go to you as they know they can trust you.
As you’re new to the game, you may not know many lawyers that can refer you to their clients. This is fine as going to things like fundraisers will help with this.
If you really want to, you can also join lawyer association groups. This will help you join Listservs as well, expanding your social circle by leaps and bounds.
Win Your Clients’ Hearts
One of the reasons people dread working with lawyers is due to their bad attitude. Lawyers aren’t usually the most fun people to be around. This is amplified as lawyers tend to not reply to the client’s questions quickly (through the phone or email). This is detrimental if you’re a client and your case has been going on for a while because you have no clue about its status.
Clients will appreciate it when you open up to them as well as give immediate replies. This way, they will always come to you whenever they face a legal dispute as they can rely on you.
All in all, there are myriad ways you can jump-start your law firm, making sure it is successful. So, keep the above tips in mind if this is something you want to do.