A lawyer has been suspended for two years for charging a client hourly legal fees for both legal and non-legal services, including driving the ailing client and helping him move to a new home.
A national law firm is facing a legal malpractice claim that offers a cautionary tale for lawyers who might not be following best billing practices.
Succeeding as a solo or small firm attorney means being not only a good lawyer, but also a savvy businessperson.
The legal profession has reached a point where upheaval is the “new normal.” Certainly large law firms are changing in response to recession, technology and client demands; those firms that don’t change quickly enough, like Dewey & LeBoeuf, are doomed to swift failure.
Some wonder if the sole and small firm practitioner will survive this kind of turmoil.
The answer is that although big law firms serve the “1 percent” of the corporate world, there is enormous potential for solos and small firms to thrive by serving the “99 percent” of our society.
A controversial fee proposal from the Executive Office for U.S. Trustees is receiving a cold reception from bankruptcy lawyers, with some even threatening to leave the practice if the policy is implemented.
The way in which legal services are marketed and delivered to clients must coincide with what the client wants and needs. One effective marketing tool is a law firm billing approach that is convenient and efficient. Service is the one thing that clients want from lawyers more than anything else, even more than lower fees.
Much has been made of the growing efforts by lawyers to “unbundle” their services in an effort to woo clients, asking them to pay for only what they need.
Now, a small Minnesota family law firm is taking that concept in an unusual direction by offering flat-fee representation in cases that are often contentious and open-ended: contested divorces.
It can be a difficult problem when a client can pay but does not want to. Such a client may not realize the benefit of the result you achieved, may not understand either the specifics or the value of what you did, or may think the bill was unfair because you charged for things that weren’t requested or explained. When this is the case, an unpaid bill is not a collection problem – it’s a communication problem.