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Solo & Small Law Firms

Client Relations

What If Your Retainer Agreement Could Look Like This?

Credit Card Agreement After reading this post at the Public Citizens Law & Policy Blog (H/T Legal Blogwatch) about simplicity guru Alan Siegel’s efforts to cleanse the gobbledygook from consumer agreements, my first thought was that if Siegel succeeds, then Minneapolis, Minnesota solo lawyer and bloggerGraham Martinwill have to find another topic to replace his…

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Lindsay Lohan: Dream or Nightmare Client for Newbie Solo?

So here’s a practice management issue that law school doesn’t teach: You’re a newbie solo who passed the bar nine months ago and opened a law firm right afterwards.  Suddenly, the phone rings:  it’s a Hollywood superstar on the line, she’s  looking for a criminal defense lawyer to represent her and she’s picked you!  Trouble…

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Warning Our Clients About the Dangers of Oversharing on Social Media

A while back, a colleague of mine had to deal with a client who fell squarely into the “with clients like these, who needs enemies” category.  This client had shared copies of all of my colleague’s emails to him  with of the opposing parties in the case.  Worse, my colleague didn’t learn about the disclosure…

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BonaFide Office Rules – A Rejoinder by Tannebaum

Last week, I  criticized a ruling out of New Jersey interpreting the bonafide office rule to prohibit virtual offices.  I argued that the rule (1) would force lawyers to hire staff and rent full time space, thereby raising the cost of legal services and (2) make it difficult for recently unemployed lawyers and female lawyers…

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NJ’s Bonafide Office Rule Would Have Me Doubled Over With Laughter Except That It Will Double the Cost of Legal Services

I wish that I hadn’t chosen April Fools’ Day to post about ACPE 718/CAA 41, the joint opinion by two New Jersey judicial advisory committees ruling that virtual office arrangements, outsourced or shared receptionist services and even working outside of the office for more than a few hours violate New Jersey’s “bonafide office requirement.”  Because…

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To Win the Hearts and Minds of Consumers, Lawyers Need to Sell, Not Sue

To date, we lawyers haven’t been able to effectively sell the public on the idea that document preparation services like Legal Zoom are a poor substitute for the services of a lawyer.  So, being lawyers, we’ve done the next best thing to selling:  suing.  Last month, a Missouri law firm filed a class action lawsuit against…

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I Can Unbundle The Case, But I Can’t Unbundle My Heart

I want to wholeheartedly embrace the concept of unbundled legal services, I really do.  After all, what’s not to like?  The demand for affordable legal services is greater than ever.  With courthouses overrun by pro se litigants, even judges are pressing for unbundled legal services.  Technology is empowering a generation of educated, sophisticated consumers who…

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