If you haven’t heard of business attorney Aiden Kramer yet, you will.
She is based in Denver, Colorado but serves clients throughout the state (and those outside the state on federal matters) with her virtual law practice.
And she is a YouTube sensation with her “All Up in Yo’ Business” videos where she breaks down complicated legal issues that everyone can understand.
For a sample, check out this video about entity organization that she makes both educational and entertaining:
In our interview, Aiden shares what she has learned from starting her own practice and how video helps educate and attract potential clients.
Q. Why did you make the leap to start your own law firm?
I always knew I would go solo at some point in my career, but I certainly never expected it to happen right out of law school. I was interning with a local attorney during my 3L year and towards the end of the year my boss made various statements here and there about wanting to hire me after I passed the bar exam. Well, the bar exam came and went, I was sworn in and licensed, and it turned out that my boss just didn’t have enough work to justify hiring me. I had somewhat relied on that and hadn’t applied for many other positions and had no other prospects, so I figured what better time than now to take the plunge and try to go it alone. Read more
As a solo law practitioner starting your firm is a challenge, especially when retaining clients. It is tempting to accept any client that comes your way. You do have to pay the bills. However it is advisable to be selective in your clients to avoid headaches down the road.
Any problems you perceive with a prospective client in the beginning will only be magnified once you have put a lot of time and effort into the representation. And untangling yourself from a troublesome client is much more difficult than spending your energy into attracting new ones.
Here are some red flags to avoid problematic clients:
Michael F. Brennan, gives an honest account about what it takes to start a new law practice. Much of running a law practice is having the right mental attitude, drive, and focus. The author gives advice on the mental motivation to becoming a success. And he also talks about how to handle the negatives: set-backs, self-doubt, and what other people think. It is an excellent guide to examine whether having your own law practice is right for you and giving you the motivation to conquer the challenges.
Catherine Hodder, Esq. and Kelly C. Sturmthal, Esq., put together a resource manual that sets out a step-by-step action plan for starting a new law practice utilizing the latest technology. From setting up your legal structure, to choosing the right systems and software, to handling collections and clients, to marketing strategies, this is an excellent reference. The second edition has over 20% more information including marketing with social media.
With sample forms and letters, helpful links, website information and checklists, this book has mapped out everything an attorney needs. An excellent reference for attorneys who want to operate with low overhead or have a mobile law office. Read the reviewshere.
Starting up your own law practice can be challenging and scary but it is also very rewarding! Do your homework and research if starting out a “solo” law practice is for you. Good luck, law school grad!
Having a solo law practice is great! It is wonderful to be your own boss and call all the shots. The downside is that there may be no one to listen to you. Although it is rewarding to hang out your own shingle, it can get lonely.
Here are some ideas to get you connected with others in your field to share the highs and lows of solo law practice:
1. Find Lawyer Groups to Network With
You will find that your state bar association has many groups and divisions of like-minded attorneys who meet in your area. Join a couple of events to meet other attorneys. You may gain insights to improve your practice and perhaps a few referrals as well.
2. Attend Networking Events
There are many business to business networks or Chamber of Commerce organizations that organize networking events. Try a few and see which ones you enjoy and try to meet other professionals. They may have sound business advice and can refer clients to you once they know about you. Read more