Law Firm Marketing & Management

Although recreational marijuana was legalized in Illinois this year, there are still many other drugs that are classified as illegal in the state. These include cocaine, LSD, heroin, Methamphetamines, and Ecstasy. In addition, owning or carrying certain drug paraphernalia can result in serious criminal charges. The consequences of a conviction can be severe, from fines to a lengthy prison sentence, not to mention a stain on your record. Many people may not know that simply having an item that is used to ingest or make a drug is a crime. If you or someone you know is facing any type…
Question:  I am a sole owner of four-attorney, boutique litigation law firm in Chicago. I am 52 years old and looking for a long-term succession strategy for my firm. I have been approached by a large Chicago national firm involving merging my practice with their firm. We have had several meetings and they have provided me with an initial proposal. I have spent many years building my law firm, and, by merging with a large law firm it seems that I am not really receiving any value for goodwill. What are your thoughts? Response:  It is normal to exchange equity…
Question:  I am a partner in a small law firm in Northern Virginia. We are a four attorney firm with two equity partners and two associates. We are interested in acquiring a solo practitioner’s practice that is 60 years old and ready to retire. What are the issues that we should be concerned with before we spend a great deal of time on this matter? Response:  I understand your concern and reason for asking for my thoughts. You must immediately determine the nature of the clientele that you would be acquiring and whether the seller is interested in remaining with…
Chicago has been named one of the most dangerous cities, with extremely high crime rates. Turning on the news each night, you likely see devastating videos of gun violence leading to lost lives. While it is no secret that Chicago has more than its fair share of violent crimes, statistics show that property crimes actually make up 76 percent of criminal offenses in Chicago in 2018. As a city known for its crime, it is important to know what actions constitute the most common offenses if you are a Chicagoan. Knowing who you can turn to if you find yourself…
Interested in joining your peers in the legal blogging world but don’t have time to set up and maintain a blog of your own? LexBlog can help! Twenty is LexBlog’s new and completely turnkey blogging platform. It is being offered to ISBA members as part of LexBlog’s national #Blog4Good campaign, which aims to aggregate and showcase pandemic-related legal information. Blogs on the new Twenty platform are now easier for ISBA members to set up and use. As an added bonus, they’re free during the first six months and are only $39.99 per month after that. ISBA members who purchase a…
Question:  I am a member of a three member management committee in a sixteen lawyer boutique litigation firm in downtown Chicago. The firm has been in business for over forty years. We have sixteen lawyers in the firm of which ten are equity partners and six are associates. The original founders are retired and we are in second generation. Until five years ago all partners were involved in all aspects of firm management. At that time we made the decision to put in place a three-member management committee that was charged to handle certain aspects of firm management with the…
Crimes can consist of various actions, some of which do not always involve physical confrontations. According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), in 2018, 15 percent of all fraud complaints were related to identity theft. Overall, 33 percent of U.S. adults have experienced identity theft at some point in their lifetime. It can be relatively easy to find people’s personal and sensitive information on social media and networking sites, which can make them targets for phishing and imposter scams. Identity theft basically means representing yourself as someone else for financial gain. This offense is considered a form of fraud,…
Question:   Our firm is a four attorney estate planning and probate specialty practice in Fresno, California. We are in our 15th year of practice. In addition to word of mouth referrals from past clients as well as referrals from attorneys and other professionals, seminars has been a major source of new business for the firm. In fact, for the last several years seminars has been our number one source of new client business. As a result of COVID-19 we are no longer conducting seminars and we have concerns that this is going to have a major negative impact on our…
Question:  Our firm is a four lawyer estate planning firm in Bakersfield, California. As you know our state has been under stay at home orders for some time. We have everyone except our receptionist and one attorney working remotely from their homes. We are doing much better than I expected. In fact we are getting new clients at close to our usual numbers per month and our fee collections have actually exceeded our normal monthly fee collections. How are other firms doing? Response:  It depends on practice area and firm size. Many of the very large firms are facing dramatic…
Chicago’s Kennedy Expressway experienced a nearly 60 car pileup this Wednesday – the morning of icy conditions more usually seen in the winter months. This crash was a result of a combination of speeding and following too closely. These actions can lead to traffic tickets and fines for smaller crashes where it is obvious who is at fault. The impact of this major crash was that 14 people were taken to the hospital and several more were treated on-scene. All of this could have been avoided if drivers practiced safer driving habits in the winter-like weather. Safe Driving Tips…
Question:  I am the managing partner of a fourteen attorney business law transaction and litigation firm in St. Louis, Missouri. Our area is in lock-down as a result of COVID-19 and everyone in our firm except for our receptionist has been working remotely. We had planned on putting in place a strategic plan this year and completed a couple of initial meetings. As we move forward how do we plan in this environment or should we even try? Response:  These are definitely uncertain times and the legal profession will be facing an uncertain future. I believe that COVID-19 will leave…
Question:  I am the owner of a general practice firm in the Southwest Suburbs of Chicago with four associates and four staff members. I am 66 and was planning on beginning to work on my retirement plan this year and approach two of my senior associates regarding acquiring my practice. I was hoping to retire and exit the practice two years from now. Now with the Covid-19 situation I am not sure what I should do. Is this a good time to even think about approaching my associates? While business is slow we are doing fairly well working remotely. I…
Question: I am the sole owner of an estate planning firm in downtown Chicago with four other attorneys and six staff members. Since we are considered by the state of Illinois to be a  necessary business service most of us are still working at the office. I know that many firms are working remotely. How is that working out and what are the specifics of how to make that work – new client intake meetings, work on client matters, coordination with attorney and staff team, and client document signings? Response:  It is working out very well for many firms and…
Last year, there was a six-car pileup on the Kennedy Expressway which injured nine people and killed at least one person. A semi-truck struck stopped vehicles and the driver was charged with failure to reduce speed, according to the Illinois State Police department. Since then, not much has changed in regards to speeding citations on the Kennedy or the other highways which connect Chicago to the suburbs. The most unfortunate part is seeing cars travel at far too high of a speed on roads that can already be dangerous because of the number of vehicles. When Does Speeding Become Aggravated…
Question:  I am the owner of a six-lawyer business transactional law firm in south Florida. I have been practicing law for 12 and I started my present practice nine years ago. I am 42 years old.  The five attorneys that work for me are all associates, of which two are very experienced seasoned lawyers and three have less than five years experience. Since I am still a young attorney, I am not concerned about retirement or long-term succession planning; maybe I should be, but I am concerned about the short-term. What would the firm do if I got hit by…
Driving after consumption of alcohol or drugs is a dangerous action. It can put the driver and those around him or her at risk of injuries or even death. This is why Illinois has strict penalties for those who choose to drive intoxicated. Illinois State Police officers have the right to pull over any vehicle they suspect is being driven by a drunk driver. Signs that they look for are the car swerving across the road, braking and/or speeding suddenly for no reason, and misuse of car indicator lights. The DUI Traffic Stop Process Like any other traffic stop,…