A move in your legal career that offers you more freedom and flexibility can be becoming a freelance lawyer.
Not everyone would enjoy working at a law company. The workloads are demanding, the hours are lengthy, and the working conditions might not be up to your standards. Choosing which clients to deal with and your colleagues is one of the benefits of becoming a freelance lawyer.
Without a question, there are advantages to working as a freelance lawyer. Continue reading to learn a few straightforward measures to take if this is the path you want your legal profession to go.
What does a freelance lawyer do?
If you’ve ever worked at a law office, you are aware that workloads fluctuate. Freelance lawyers fill in the gaps when businesses require greater capacity to handle extra legal work (without adding more workers).
An freelance lawyer is what?
A freelance attorney is a lawyer who accepts substantial legal work on an hourly or flat fee basis from other attorneys, either directly or through a platform.
Numerous attorneys work by themselves.
Freelance lawyers can work as much or as little as they would like because they only work when it is necessary. The main reason why so many attorneys are beginning to look for freelance work is this flexibility.
There are several reasons why competent lawyers choose to practice as freelance attorneys, as Kristin Tyler, co-founder of LAWCLERK, explains. These could include things like where they are in life right now, how mobile they are, and where they are in their profession.
She says, “They come from every background you can imagine. We have freelance law professors.
Former BigLaw lawyers with highly specialized knowledge in extremely complex legal fields are now looking for freelance work because they have burned out and no longer want to compete in the BigLaw race.
We have attorneys who take care of their young children or aging parents at home. We have seasoned attorneys who are retired or semi-retired.
Types of work performed by freelance attorneys
Freelance lawyers complete tasks in a variety of fields of law, such as:
- Work on appearance. On behalf of another lawyer, freelance lawyers may be hired as appearance council to attend court (such as hearings). The freelance lawyer must be admitted to practice in the jurisdiction in which they will be appearing for this kind of work.
- written work of substance. This might entail document drafting, document review, or discovery. Consider motions, brief papers, or contracts. Even writing law firm marketing blogs is an option.
Why work as a freelance lawyer right now?
You’re not the only one drawn to working as a freelance attorney. Working as a freelance lawyer is desirable for a variety of reasons, ranging from professional ones (such as wanting more control over the amount and type of legal work you do) to personal ones (such as requiring more time at home to care for family).
At the same time, more businesses are outsourcing legal work as a way for the legal sector to meet the demand for freelance lawyers. For instance, according to a 2019 Altman Weil Survey, nearly half (48%) of law firms use contract attorneys.
The market for outsourcing legal processes is expanding quickly on a global scale. The market was reportedly predicted to develop at a compound annual growth rate of 22% from 2021 to 2027, reaching $30 billion. All of this suggests that legal firms are welcoming freelancers more frequently and are likely to do so in the future.
Despite the fact that the COVID-19 pandemic has negatively affected many law firms, there may be a bright spot for freelance practitioners.
Some businesses are taking advantage of the current situation to make it easy to outsource in the future, as Kristin points out in this edition of the Daily Matters podcast.
They’re using that time, she claims, “to finally establish the protocols and procedures they’ve wanted to establish for appropriately delegating to freelancers.”
How To Be a Freelance Lawyer
Determine Your Legal Services
Determine what legal services you will provide your clients as a freelance lawyer should be your first step. Associates and other attorneys at a legal firm are required to concentrate their practice on just one field. A freelance lawyer has a little more latitude.
It’s wise to do some study before deciding to change your legal career to freelance. If you choose to offer legal services in a niche that is unheard of in your area, you can anticipate a speedy demise of your company.
You’ll be in business longer and have more interesting cases to work on if you choose a niche with a consistent demand.
Register Your Services
You have total influence over the course your legal career will take based on your personal objectives. The next stage is to start the legal procedures to register your service once you have a general notion of what you wish to practice.
Are you going to be a one-person business? a limited responsibility company? Or even a business?
Determining how you want to run your freelance legal services might be aided by understanding the distinctions between the three.
Once your legal services have been registered, you’ll need other crucial components to set up and manage your administrative duties. A second bank account could be required for billing and tax-related activities.
Use lawyer accounting software if you intend to work only on your own, without the aid of any legal assistance. These programs are not only useful for automating monotonous administrative activities; they can also be used for the following things:
- management of documents
- tracking of time
View a detailed analysis of the top accounting programs for attorneys.
You can introduce your new service to your network once the groundwork for your freelance legal services has been established.
Traditional attorneys who work for a law firm typically seek for clients who are private citizens and other businesses. As a freelance lawyer, you’ll frequently find that your clientele are other attorneys and legal firms.
The ideal spot to start your business search is with your extensive network of contacts.
As an alternative, you can create profiles on social networking sites and start building your personal network there. LinkedIn is one of the top social networking platforms for all professionals, if you don’t already have one. You can find additional websites to connect with attorneys and find in-house career opportunities here:
- My Method
- Lawyers Online
- Network of International Attorneys
- Visit lawyer’s on demand to learn more.
Visit Foxwordy if you want to sign up for a social networking site that is becoming more and more popular. You can interact with other attorneys at Foxwordy and help out with a variety of legal industry projects.
Last but not least, if you haven’t already, you should join your neighborhood bar association and take part in as many neighborhood activities as you can.
Create a website
An online presence can provide freelance attorneys a competitive edge. Lawyer websites are a fantastic method to advertise your services and let potential clients learn more about what you do.
You can highlight your area of expertise and showcase some of your prior legal tasks on your website.
If you choose to create a website for your company, it’s crucial to know how to use it effectively. These local SEO techniques can increase the number of individuals who discover your services even if your budget is limited.
You may also try using Google PPC or Facebook Ads to advertise your services if you have some extra cash to spare. Each advertising option has its own advantages and features.
Create a blog
Are you an authority in a specific field of law and would you like to impart your expertise to others? A blog is a fantastic tool for freelance attorneys to connect with more potential customers.
Here are a few advantages of blogging about law in case you’re still unsure:
- Promotion of free services
- increases the SEO of your website
- Make contacts with potential customers
- Create a respectable online reputation
A blog needs some time and effort to develop into a powerful marketing tool. However, you can outperform your rivals by using these advice for lawyers who blog.
If you choose to pursue a legal profession as a freelance lawyer, keep in mind that success won’t come immediately. It will need careful preparation, persistence, time, and, most importantly, patience.
Remember that your legal services are much like a business, and businesses can fail just like any other. Up until the momentum rises and word of your reputation spreads around your community, the beginning will be some of the most difficult times.