Starting a solo law practice isn’t easy, but you already know that. We’re here to tell you how you can make it less difficult for you.
Assess Your Finances
Start by assessing how much money you need to bring in through your practice every month. It should be enough to run your family, pay off loans or mortgages, and keep the practice going. Prepare a list of actual and estimated expenses.
If possible, prepare two separate expense plans—one for your personal expenses and the other for your business. Based on the numbers you get, you can decide to increase or reduce costs on one end or another. Once you have the final expense list ready, add 30% to it. This 30% accounts for your taxes.
Your goal should be to generate more revenue than your expenses. So, you need to bring in at least $7,000 a month if your complete monthly expenses are around $5,000. Based on these estimations, you’ll have to bill your clientele accordingly.
Name Your Practice
Naming your practice is more important than you think. Most lawyers take the easy route here. They will mimic big, well-known law firms around them while naming the firm or practice. However, doing that doesn’t bring in additional benefits.
You might also get into legal trouble if you don’t name the practice appropriately. For instance, you can’t name your office “John Doe Law Offices” if you only have one office. You can get legally charged for that.
Bring in the Right Hardware
The first thing you need to get in terms of hardware is a good computer. A high-end laptop or desktop that can keep up with your busy schedule. You also need a printer, copier, and scanner along with the computer. Having an external hard drive will prove useful at times too.
You’ll also need a VoIP – Voice over Internet Protocol – phone system. VoIP phone systems are much better than traditional phone lines. VoIP services have advanced phone features like call forwarding, call recording, call rerouting, and much more. If you’re looking for such VoIP solutions, you can peruse this list of best VoIP for law firms. Find yourselves the best communication tools for your firm, and prepare for the next step of your journey.
Build Yourself a Website
Having a website is a must these days for any business or practice. Even lawyers need to have a website, especially if they are running solo.
For your website, you must first ensure user-friendliness. Make sure the website is responsive. You can use Bootstrap to ensure that. Your best option is to hire a professional web developer or development firm to design the website. You can use WordPress or Wix if you want to design the website yourself.
Your website must have the following things:
- A hero section to introduce your practice
- An ‘about me’ section to introduce yourself
- Your recent work and/or clients
- Reviews from your clientele
- The location of your practice
- A contact form so that interested parties can contact you through it
Run a blog on the site. Talk about your experience, share tips, and talk about current affairs and other important topics on your blog. Share them on your practice’s social media profiles to bring people’s attention to your practice.
Although it’s a solo practice, you need people to help you out. Firstly, hire people who will handle general administrative duties. These positions include a receptionist, clerks, office secretary, and security. You’ll also need an office administrator. Afterward, hire people to manage your finances, like an accountant and an account manager. For starters, this staff will be more than enough.
Of course, check your budget before you hire them. Remember to take healthcare and insurance into account while deciding whether you can hire recruits.
Spread the Word
Facebook is the best place to promote your law firm. It’s as simple as opening up a page and sharing your marketing posts. Talk about your success stories, the type of cases or clientele you’re dealing with, and so on. LinkedIn is another platform where you can run these types of posts as well as grow your network as a lawyer and solo practitioner.
So, stick to these tips as you start your solo law practice. Do all these right, and you will soon find yourself heading a successful solo law practice.
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