Learn more about how contract attorneys can be a cost-efficient and time-saving way to help you manage your practice.
In this series, legal research and writing (LRW) attorney Erin Sperger lays out her top 10 reasons that you should think about hiring a contract attorney to augment your practice. If you missed Part 1, find it here.
5. Partnering with an LRW attorney means more referrals for you.
LRW attorneys like me usually belong to several list serves where members ask for referrals. Since an LRW attorney does not take on lay clients, she is not competing against you, but constantly working for you. If you have an ongoing business relationship with an LRW attorney, she will scout potential clients to ensure more work for herself; it’s a highly symbiotic relationship.
4. A contract attorney can help expand your practice.
Solo and small firm practitioners often shy away from cases they perceive to be too complex, and at the same time, they take cases that are outside the scope of their target clientele. Hiring a contract attorney alleviates these concerns. Because you did not incur the $1,790 a week fixed cost of hiring an associate, you can strategically select clients, taking only cases that are a good fit for you and your firm. In addition, you can accept a complex case with multiple issues, because you have a professional researcher at your fingertips. When you take cases based on your passions and interests, instead of your concern for paying the bills, both you and your client are satisfied, which leads to repeat business. With the assistance of a contract attorney, you may also expand into new areas of law that you never had time to explore.
3. A contract attorney helps you get back to life.
We live in one of the most beautiful regions in the country. In any given week, there are a plethora of activities going on: concerts, festivals, movies, hiking, biking, kayaking, and swimming. When you free yourself from those late nights with Lexis or Westlaw, you can enjoy your life. You can buy that new car you have been eyeing and go for a drive in the country, or get tickets to the next Mariners or Sounders game.
2. Contract attorneys avoid time pressures and welcome deadlines.
When a new client calls and you’re already busy, you may have to shift your schedule in a hurry, or even turn down work. Contract attorneys are usually available on short notice and produce work on tight turnaround schedules. When you build a relationship with a contract attorney, she gets a sense of your style and how you present ideas. If you have worked with her before, it will only take a few minutes to explain the task, saving you even more time.
1. A contract attorney can increase client satisfaction.
The golden rule for any business owner is to under-promise and over-deliver. When you partner with a contract attorney, you can over-deliver every time. You will save money, finish on or ahead of your deadline, and alleviate stress. By passing these savings on to your client, you’ll also build your reputation: after all, no client spreads the word faster than one who has saved money on a quality service. Next time you are dealing with a difficult client, think about whether your problems could be solved — and your client satisfied — by calling a contract attorney.
If you’d like to learn more, visit the WSBA job board to post your résumé for contract work, or to search for contract attorneys for hire.