How to Create a Law Firm Business Plan Aimed at Success

Want a successful law firm? Start with a solid business plan. Our guide covers everything that will help you create a roadmap for success.

A firm exists to serve people- so its business plan must take into account those it aims to help. A law firm's business plan lays out the key pillars that will support a practice, from operational details to marketing strategies to financial projections. Furthermore, it should provide a clear roadmap for where the firm hopes to be in the coming years.

In this blog,  we will guide you through the process  of creating a comprehensive law firm business plan that  will help you achieve your goals . Additionally, in our latest Grow Law Firm podcast, our host Sasha Berson conversed with Omar Ochoa, the founding attorney of Omar Ochoa Law Firm, to discuss the topic of creating a law firm business plan aimed at success.

Why Is a Business Plan Important for Law Firms?

A business plan is a vital tool for any law firm to achieve success. It outlines goals, strategies, and the feasibility of business ideas, providing a clear direction and focus for the firm. The plan can be used to secure funding from investors or financial institutions by demonstrating the potential for growth and profitability.

Benefits of a business plan

Moreover, a business plan supports decision-making by evaluating the feasibility of new ventures and assessing potential risks and rewards. It helps to manage resources effectively by setting financial goals and tracking progress, ensuring the firm is making the most of its resources and achieving objectives.

Lastly, a law firm's business plan enables growth by identifying new opportunities and developing strategies to capitalize on them. By planning for the future and setting realistic growth targets, law firms can take their businesses to the next level. Overall, a well-developed business plan is critical for success in the legal industry, providing direction and focus, supporting decision-making, managing resources effectively, and enabling growth.

General Tips for Creating an Attorney Business Plan

Business plan best practices

Building a business plan for law firms is not an easy or intuitive process. By considering the following issues before opening your doors to clients, you have a much better chance of having a stable firm that matches your values and has a clear set of goals.

— Stay Focused

Forming a law firm can feel overwhelming. You have a lot of freedom and can easily get sidetracked into issues that either can wait or do not deserve your attention.

If having a strong law firm website design is important enough for you to include in your plan, you will spend time on that instead of less important matters.

A plan also includes a budget. The process of planning your firm's finances can ensure that you do not overspend (or underspend) as you start your own firm.

The attention to detail that comes from having a plan will help you avoid spreading yourself too thin by focusing on every issue or the wrong issues. Instead, you will maintain your focus on the important issues.

Whether you have law partners or develop a solo law firm business plan, the plan will help you stay focused on your end goals.

— Keep Track of Goals and Results

It is easy to set goals when you  start a law firm and then promptly forget about them.

Your plan will set out your goals and the metrics you will use to determine your progress toward meeting them. The plan should also explain how you will know when you have met them.

For example, you might have a growth goal of reaching five lawyers within two years. Or you might have a revenue goal of collecting $200,000 your first year.

Too many businesses, including law firms, meander on their developmental path. By setting goals and the path for meeting them, you will have guardrails to keep your firm on track.

"If you want to be the number one law firm in the country by revenue right in a 20 year time period, have that be your goal and everything that you do right is in service of that goal. You might not get there, but you're gonna find that you're gonna be very successful either way."

"If you want to be the number one law firm in the country by revenue right in a 20 year time period, have that be your goal and everything that you do right is in service of that goal. You might not get there, but you're gonna find that you're gonna be very successful either way." — Omar Ochoa

— Sort Out Your Own Law Firm Strategy

Developing a clear vision is important for establishing a strategic law firm plan aimed at long-term goals . As Omar Ochoa discusses in the podcast, having very specific milestone visions like where you want to be in five, ten, or fifteen years helps drive the strategy and actions needed to get there.

It's easy to say that you'll run your law firm better. But a plan actually helps you identify how to improve by articulating a concrete strategy. The process of creating the plan will help you pinpoint problems and solutions.

A plan forces consideration of operational details often overlooked. It equates to defining your firm's purpose and then pursuing that vision with purpose-driven strategies and actions. As Omar notes, marrying vision to action through knowledge of other successful law firm models is key to achieving goals.

One area that is frequently overlooked in plans is the inclusion of law firm marketing strategies . Developing this aspect is critical for attracting clients and sustaining growth.

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— Move Forward

You should view your plan as a law firm business development plan that will guide the formation and growth of your firm .

You can review the document periodically to remind you and your law partners of your growth and expansion projections. After this review, you can ensure your growth and expansion remain on track to carry you to your goals.

The review will also tell you whether you need to update your firm's goals. When you started your law firm, you might have been unduly pessimistic or optimistic in your projections. Once you have some time to operate according to your plan, you can update your goals to keep them realistic. You can also update your processes to focus on what works and discard what does not.

The review can provide your projections for what you hope to accomplish and the roadmap for accomplishing it.

Law Firm Business Plan Template

law firm business plan

Each of the websites below includes at least one attorney business development plan template:

  • Business Plan Workbook
  • PracticePro
  • Smith & Jones, P.A.
  • Wy'East Law Firm

You can use a law firm strategic plan example from these sites to start your firm's plan, then turn the plan into a document unique to your circumstances, goals, and needs.

What to Consider before Starting Law Firm Business Plans

Before starting a law firm business plan, think through a few key issues, including:

— Setting the Goals

Reflect deeply on your firm's purpose. Think about who you represent and how you can best meet their needs. A law firm exists for its clients. As you think about your  law firm goals , think about goals for providing legal services to your clients.

"We continue to try to have the biggest impact that we can because ultimately, in my opinion at least, that's what lawyers are for, is to be able to help people and be able to move us forward." — Omar Ochoa

You need to set realistic and achievable goals. These goals should reflect your reasons for starting your law firm. Thus, if you started your law firm because you expected to make more money on your own than working for someone else, set some goals for collections.

While you are setting your goals, think about how you will reach them and the ways you will measure your success. For example, if you want to expand to include ten lawyers within three years, think about intermediate goals at the end of years one and two. This helps measure your progress.

— Choosing Partnership Structure

For lawyers considering a partnership structure, it's important to select partners that complement each other's strengths and weaknesses to help the firm function effectively.

There are 2 main partnership structure options:

  • A single-tier model provides equal decision-making power and liability between partners.
  • Meanwhile, a two-tier structure offers tiers like equity and non-equity partners, providing flexibility and career progression opportunities.

While similarly skilled individuals may clash, partners with differing abilities can succeed together. Some attorneys also choose to run their own firm for flexibility. This allows them to leverage different specialists through occasional joint ventures tailored for specific cases, without the constraints of a single long-term partnership. Furthermore, it highlights how the law firm partnership structures impacts freedom and sustainability.

— Thinking of the Revenue You Need

Calculate how much revenue you need to cover your overhead and pay your salary. Suppose your expenses include:

  • $2,000 per month for office rent
  • $36,000 per year for a legal assistant salary
  • $600 per month for courier expenses
  • $400 per month for a copier lease

thinking of the revenue you need

Assume you want the  median annual salary for lawyers  of $127,990. You need $199,990 per year in revenue to cover your salary and expenses.

But revenue is not the end of the story. Your landlord, vendors, and employees expect to get paid monthly. So, you should also calculate how much cash flow you need each month to cover your hard expenses.

You also need a reserve. Clients expect you to front expenses like filing fees. Make sure you have a reserve to pay these costs and float them until clients reimburse you.

— Defining the Rate of Payment

You need to make some difficult decisions when it comes to setting your own fee structure. If you choose a higher billing rate, you will need to work less to meet your revenue goals. But you might not find many clients who are able to pay your fees.

Whether you charge a flat fee, contingent fee, or hourly fee, you should expect potential clients to compare your fees to those of your direct and indirect competitors. Remember, your firm competes against other lawyers, online services like  LegalZoom , and do-it-yourself legal forms books.

Finally, you need to comply with your state's rules of professional conduct when setting your fees. The  ABA's model rules  give eight factors to determine the reasonableness of a fee. These factors include the customary fee for your location and the skill required to provide the requested legal services.

— Making the Cases in Your Law Practice Meet the Revenue Needs

Figure out how much you need to work to meet your revenue target . If you charge a flat fee, you can simply divide your revenue target by your flat fee.

Hourly fee lawyers can calculate the number of hours they need to bill and collect. However, law firm owners rarely bill 100% of the hours they work due to the administrative tasks they perform to run a firm. Also, you will probably not collect 100% of your billings, and clients could take 90 days or longer to pay.

Contingency fee lawyers will find it nearly impossible to project the cases they need. You have no way of knowing the value of your cases in advance. You also have no idea when your cases will settle. You could work on a case for years before you finally get paid.

Parts of a Business Plan for Law Firm Formation: Structure

A law firm business plan is a written document that lays out your law firm goals and strategies.

For many businesses, a business plan helps secure investors. But the ethical rules prohibit law firms from seeking funding from  outside investors or non-lawyer shareholders .

Parts of a Business Plan

Your business plan is for you and your law partners. It will help you manage everyone's expectations and roles in the firm. Here is a law firm business plan example to help you see the parts and pieces in action.

— Executive Summary

An executive summary combines the important information in the business plan into a single-page overview. Your plan will include details like projections, budgets, and staffing needs. This section highlights the conclusions from those detailed analyses.

Your executive summary should include :

  • A mission statement explaining the purpose of your firm in one or two sentences
  • A list of the core values that your firm will use whenever it makes decisions about its future
  • The firm's overarching goals for itself, its lawyers, and the clients it serves
  • The unique selling proposition that sets your firm apart from other firms in the legal industry

You should think of this section as a quick way for people like lenders, potential law partners, and merger targets, to quickly understand the principles that drive your firm.

— Law Firm Description and Legal Structure

First, you will describe what your law firm does. You will describe your law practice and the clients you expect to serve.

Second, you will describe how your firm operates. The organization and management overview will explain your legal structure and the management responsibilities of you and your law partners.

This section should fill in the details about your firm's operation and structure by:

  • Describing the scope of the legal services you offer and your ideal clients
  • Restating your mission statement and core values and expanding upon how they will guide your firm
  • Explaining your location and where your clients will come from
  • Describing your business entity type and management structure
  • Detailing your unique selling proposition , including the features that distinguish your firm from your competitors

When someone reads this section, they should have a clear picture of what you will create.

— Financial Calculations

Your attorney business plan explains where your firm's revenue comes from and where it goes. This is where your skills as a lawyer begin to diverge from your skills as a business owner. You may need to learn a few new accounting concepts so you can perform the analyses expected in a financial plan.

You will need a  financial plan  for at least the first year.

If you plan to seek a bank loan or line of credit, your bank may need a financial plan that covers three years or longer.

You will need more than a few rough numbers for a useful business plan. Instead, you will need to estimate your expenses and revenues as accurately as possible.

"Take some financial statements courses, take some managerial accounting courses that teach you how to track costs, how to frame costs in a way that you're looking at the important costs." — Omar Ochoa

You might need to contact vendors and service providers to get precise costs. You will probably need to track your billings with your prior firm to predict your revenues. If you are opening a law firm after law school or an in-house job, you may need a competitive analysis to show what similar law firms earn in your location and practice area.

Some reports you may need in your business plan include:

  • Revenue analysis listing the fees you will collect each month
  • Budget describing your monthly and annual expenses
  • Financial projections combining the revenue analysis and budgeted expenses to predict your profit margins
  • Cash flow statement showing how your revenues and expenses affect your cash on hand.

Your cash flow statement might be the most important financial report because it explains how your bank balance will fluctuate over time. If your clients take too long to pay their bills or you have too many accounts payable due at the same time, your cash flow statement will show you when money might get tight.

— Market Analysis

A market analysis will tell you where you fit into the legal market in your location and field. You need a competitive analysis to understand the other lawyers and law firms that will compete with you for potential clients. You can also analyze their marketing messages to figure out how to stand out from the competition.

How to conduct market analysis

A competitive analysis will tell you what services other firms offer, how much they charge, and what features help your competitors succeed.

Your analysis should include a discussion about your :

  • Ideal clients and what you can do to help them
  • Market size and whether you offer something clients need
  • Competitors and what they offer to clients
  • Competitive advantages and how you can market them to potential clients

You can also develop and hone your marketing strategy based on the benefits you offer to clients over your competitors. Finally, a market analysis can tell you the locations and practice areas in which your firm may expand in the future.

Your market analysis helps you focus your efforts on your legal niche.

— Marketing Plan

A marketing plan sets out the steps you will take to reach your target market. Your marketing strategy will take your market analysis and turn it into a plan of action.

You will start with the results of your market analysis identifying your clients, your competitors, and your competitive advantages. You will then discuss the message you can deliver to potential clients that captures the advantages you have over your competition.

Questions for marketing plan creation

Some advantages you might have over other lawyers and law firms might include tangible benefits like lower billing rates or local office locations. Other advantages might provide some intangible benefits like more years of experience or state-bar-certified specialists in those states that allow specialization.

You will then discuss your marketing plan. A marketing plan explains :

  • Characteristics of the target market you want to reach
  • What your competition offers
  • The distinct benefits you offer
  • A message you can use to explain what separates you from your competition
  • Your action plan for delivering your message
  • Your goals for your action plan, such as the number of client leads, new clients, or new cases per month

Your action plan will include the marketing channels you want to use to spread your message. Marketing specialists can help you identify the best channels for your marketing message and client base.

For example, if you practice intellectual property law, you need to reach business owners and in-house lawyers who want to protect their companies' brands, inventions, artistic works, and trade secrets. A marketing agency may help you create a marketing strategy geared toward trade publications and business magazines.

However, IP lawyers require an entirely different marketing strategy than firms that practice family law. Family lawyers need to market to individuals and will tailor their marketing efforts toward different marketing channels and messages.

Even if you expect most of your client leads to come from referrals, you still need brand recognition for those leads to find you. You should consider a website, basic SEO, legal directory, and bar association listings.

— Your Law Firm Services

You will outline the services your law firm offers to clients. Lawyers with established clients and an existing legal practice can simply describe what they already do.

Any new law firm or lawyer transitioning from other practice areas should consider:

  • Practice areas you know and enjoy
  • Overlapping practice fields that will not require extra staff, such as personal injury and workers' comp
  • Related legal services your clients may need, such as wills and guardianship

By offering needed services you can competently provide, you can gain clients and avoid referring existing clients out to other lawyers.

— Your Law Firm Budget

You should approach your budget as a living document. You will spend more money as you add more lawyers and staff members to your firm. But you can also look for ways to reduce your operating costs through investments in technology services and other cost-saving measures .

Your budget should set out the amount you expect to initially spend on start-up expenses. As you create your start-up budget, remember many of these expenses are not recurring. Furniture, computers, and office space build-outs can last several years. In short, your budget should answer the question, "What do you need to open a law firm?"

It should also lay out the amount you plan to spend each month to operate your firm. Here, you will include your recurring expenses, such as rent, staff salaries, insurance premiums, and equipment leases.

Using your operating budget, you will determine the amount of money you need to start and run your firm. This, in turn, will tell you whether you need to take out a loan or tap into your savings to start your law firm. You will need a plan for paying your expenses and day-to-day costs while your firm gets onto its feet.

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Some Useful Tips on Creating a Business Plan for Law Firm Creation and Development

As you draft your law firm business plan, you should focus on the process. By putting your thoughts down in writing, you will often identify issues you had not previously considered.

Some other tips for drafting your business plan include:

— Describe Both Strengths and Weaknesses

You want to project confidence as you prepare your business plan. Remember, you will use this plan to approach potential law partners, lenders, and merger targets. You need to show that you have a solid plan backed up by your financial projections.

At the same time, you need to remain realistic. Write a business plan that describes your business challenges as well as your competitive advantages.

For example, if you have a strong competitor that has a solid  law firm reputation management  and many of the clients you will target, acknowledge the difficulty of getting those clients to switch law firms. Describe your marketing strategies for approaching and pitching your law firm to those clients.

— Think Ahead

Remember that your business plan sets out the roadmap for both the establishment and operation of your law firm . Think about issues that could arise as your firm grows and matures.

For example, you may have a goal of reaching ten lawyers in three years. But as your staff grows, you may need a human resources manager. You may also seek to handle your payroll in-house instead of outsourcing it to a payroll provider. These changes will create ripple effects throughout your business plans. You will incur costs when you add staff members. You will also realize benefits like increased attorney efficiency.

At the same time, any projections more than five years into the future will likely be useless. Your firm and its clients will evolve, and technology will change how you practice law.

— Be Clear about Your Intentions

As you develop your plan, you should keep its purpose in mind. First, you want to outline your core values and goals for your law firm. Set out the reasons why you started your law firm and what you intend to accomplish with it.

"You can't just be doing something because you want prestige. There's gotta be more to that, right? You have to have a purpose that you're following. And if you've got that, that purpose is like gravity, right? You will always be grounded." — Omar Ochoa

Second, you set out your path to achieving those goals. This will include boring technical information like how much you spend on legal research every month. But it will also explain your approach to solving problems consistent with your mission statement and philosophy for law firm management.

— Consult and Update If Necessary

Your plan should guide you as you build your firm. It contains your goals and the roadmap for reaching them. But your plan is not carved in stone.

As you face challenges, you will consult your plan to make sure you approach these challenges in a way consistent with achieving your goals. But under some circumstances, you might find that the plan no longer provides the right solution.

As you work with your firm and your law partners, your goals, processes, and solutions to problems may evolve. The technology your firm uses may change. Your law firm's costs may go up with inflation or down as you realize economies of scale. You should update your plan when this happens.

Final Steps

There is no recipe for creating a business plan for law firm development. What goes into your mission statement and plan will depend on several factors, including your law firm's business model. But this is a feature, not a bug of developing a business plan.

The process of business planning will help you develop solutions to issues you might have overlooked. If you have law partners, just going through the process of creating a law firm business plan can ensure that everyone is on the same page.

As you create your plan, the process itself should provoke thoughts and ideas so you can have a unique law firm tailored to your goals and values. This will help you get exactly what you wanted when you started in the legal industry.

To learn how to expand your client base as your firm grows, check out Grow Law Firm, a professional  law firm SEO agency .

Founder of Omar Ochoa Law Firm

Omar Ochoa is a founding attorney with extensive experience in complex litigation, including antitrust, class actions, and securities cases. He has recovered hundreds of millions of dollars for clients and has been nationally recognized as one of the best young trial lawyers in the country.

Omar graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with degrees in business administration, accounting, and economics. He later earned his law degree from the university, serving as editor-in-chief of the Texas Law Review. He has clerked for two federal judges and has worked at the prestigious law firm Susman Godfrey L.L.P. Omar is dedicated to seeking excellence. He has been recognized for his outstanding achievements in antitrust litigation.

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Seven Sample Attorney Business Plans: Why Attorneys Must Have Business Plans

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By  Harrison Barnes

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  • Business plans are a dying art, especially in the legal profession.
  • Needless to say, business plans are also essential for a lawyer’s career.
  • As the adage goes, if you don't plan your career, someone else will plan it for you.

Seven Sample Attorney Business Plans: Why Attorneys Must Have Business Plans

Many of you work in firms that don't have a business plan for the firm as a whole , let alone your practice group or individual attorneys. And some of you are not privy to the firm's plan, even if there is one.

  • If you are interested in seeing the elements of a lateral partner business plan click here: Partner Business Plans: Key Elements

Even so, that's no reason to forgo developing a plan for yourself. Remember, if you don't plan your career, someone else will plan it for you.

Have no fear. Personal business planning is not about writing a 50-page manifesto outlining every detail of every day of your professional life for the next 10 years . In fact, personal business planning can be as simple as you want to make it, as you can see here with this sample business plan for law practice PDF . You don't even have to call it a business plan -- call it a career plan if you prefer.

No matter how simple you make it or what you call it, personal business planning is about taking inventory of where you are , determining where you want to go and building a roadmap for getting there. Once you have the plan in writing, all you have to do is revisit it periodically to check your course and make any necessary adjustments.

business plan lawyer partner

Also, when it comes to planning, the biggest land mines are complexity and procrastination. Try to avoid creating a plan that overwhelms you or anyone you tell about it. And remember that any plan is better than no plan at all.

Strive to keep your plan simple and start taking action. As an attorney, you're well-versed in the areas of analysis and logic. In every work matter, you look at the situation and connect the dots to accomplish the desired objective. Apply the same approach to personal business planning and the dots you connect will lead you to the career you've always wanted.

  • See 30 Ways to Generate Business as an Attorney for more information.

Business Plan For A Law Firm

How do i write a business plan for a law firm, what goes into a business plan, overview of the firm.

  • A mission statement about the firm’s purpose.
  • A vision statement or recitation of medium- and long-term goals for the firm.
  • Important aspects of the firm’s history.
  • Any important philosophies that the firm brings to legal practice.

Market Analysis

Do lawyers write business plans, 1. what are your goals.

  • What do I want to achieve by starting my own law firm ?
  • What is the impact I want to have?
  • What am I good at?
  • How do I want to service my clients?
  • What problems do I want to help solve?
  • What does success look like after starting this law firm?

2. Consider how much revenue you will need.

3. setting your fee structure, 4. determine how many cases you need to meet that revenue goal, how to create a law firm business plan, 1. executive summary.

  • Mission statement: One or two sentences describing your firm’s purpose.
  • Core values: What values are most important to the firm?
  • Major goals: What are your firm’s overarching goals and objectives?
  • Unique selling proposition: What sets your firm apart from other firms?

2. Firm Description

  • Service(s): What type of law do you practice? What types of clients do you serve?
  • Firm values: Restate your mission statement and core values.
  • Legal structure: What sort of business entity are you? Are you in a sole proprietorship or a limited liability partnership?
  • Location: Where is the office geographically located? What areas does the firm serve?
  • Unique selling proposition: What makes your firm stand out? What technology or services give your firm an edge?

3. Market Analysis

  • Ideal client: What demographics (like location, age, occupation), needs, and motivations would signify the best client match for your firm, and why?
  • Industry description: What is the current and projected size of the market your firm is in? What are the trends in your legal niche?
  • Competitive analysis: Who are your direct and indirect competitors, and how are they serving your target market? Where do your competitors succeed? What opportunities are there for your firm?
  • Projections: How much can your ideal clients spend on legal services? How much can you charge?

4. Organization and Management Overview

  • Describe what makes you unique and what sets you apart from other applicants.
  • If applicable, include what makes each member of your team suitable for their particular roles.
  • The organizational chart is a great visual aid if you have a larger practice.

5. Services

  • What problems do your potential clients need your help with?
  • How can your services uniquely help your clients solve their problems?
  • What is the benefit of your services to clients?
  • Why would potential clients choose your firm over another firm?

6. Marketing Strategy

  • Ideal client: Where would you find your ideal client?
  • Marketing goals: Detail what specific outcomes you hope to accomplish through marketing. Goals should include tactical objectives (more clients? Higher billing rates?) and overall objectives (like increased name recognition).
  • Unique selling proposition: Restate what sets you apart and makes you uniquely able to best serve your clients.
  • Competition: Detail who your competition is—and what they are doing to gain clients. Analyze their marketing strategies and assess where the cost of your services fits in with your competitors.
  • Action plan: List the specific actions your firm will take to reach your target market and achieve your marketing goals (this could include a media/advertising strategy).

7. Financial Plan

  • Revenue goal: How much money you want to make broken down by month.
  • Financial projections: What you will really expect to earn, how many cases you think you will have the capacity to take on, and what you will be charging each client each month.
  • Budget: A breakdown of your expenses and what your money will be going towards each month.
  • Cash flow statement: What you actually earned and spent each month. This is different from your projections and budget and should be updated as the year progresses. You will find that you may have budgeted for something that cost you much less than you originally thought or made more in a month than you projected, these discrepancies should be recorded in your cash flow statement.

8. Start-Up Budget

  • Hardware (laptops, printers, scanners, office furniture, etc.)
  • Office space (Will you rent, or work from home?)
  • Malpractice insurance
  • Staff salaries (Are you planning to hire an administrative assistant or paralegal?)
  • Utilities (Phone, internet, etc.)
  • Practice management software or other technology services
  • Partner Business Plans: Key Elements
  • You Need to be Self-Managing and Responsible
  • The Importance of Finding and Creating Demand
  • The Importance of Asking the Right Questions, Self Improvement and Perception
  • Attorney Business Plan Sample 1
  • Attorney Business Plan Sample 2
  • Attorney Business Plan Sample 3
  • Attorney Business Plan Sample 4
  • Attorney Business Plan Sample 5
  • Attorney Business Plan Sample 6
  • Attorney Business Plan Sample 7

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Harrison also does a weekly free webinar with live Q&A for law firms, companies, and others who hire attorneys each Wednesday at 10:00 am PST. You can sign up for the weekly webinar here: Register on Zoom

You can browse a list of past webinars here: Webinar Replays

You can also listen to Harrison Barnes Podcasts here: Attorney Career Advice Podcasts

You can also read Harrison Barnes' articles and books here: Harrison's Perspectives

Harrison Barnes is the legal profession's mentor and may be the only person in your legal career who will tell you why you are not reaching your full potential and what you really need to do to grow as an attorney--regardless of how much it hurts. If you prefer truth to stagnation, growth to comfort, and actionable ideas instead of fluffy concepts, you and Harrison will get along just fine. If, however, you want to stay where you are, talk about your past successes, and feel comfortable, Harrison is not for you.

Truly great mentors are like parents, doctors, therapists, spiritual figures, and others because in order to help you they need to expose you to pain and expose your weaknesses. But suppose you act on the advice and pain created by a mentor. In that case, you will become better: a better attorney, better employees, a better boss, know where you are going, and appreciate where you have been--you will hopefully also become a happier and better person. As you learn from Harrison, he hopes he will become your mentor.

To read more career and life advice articles visit Harrison's personal blog.

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Building a Business Plan for a Law Firm Partner Move

The legal market has become more and more competitive in recent years, with law firms coming under intense pressure to serve their clients more efficiently, while simultaneously increasing the amount of revenue that partners bring in. As a result, companies are now less willing to take a chance on a potential partner and instead will insist that they prove their worth. This is even more acute now that the economy has turned downwards and is likely to remain so for the foreseeable future.

Simply having the right skills and being a cultural fit is no longer enough to secure a partner position. Instead, you will need to demonstrate to the firm that you are able to earn your keep and make a profit. Because of this, it is essential that you develop a practice which is personal to you and clients and work that will move with you, should you choose to move law firms. You will then need to be able to write a detailed business plan that demonstrates your potential value to both your existing firm and any firm you may want to join. 

You will need to go through a similar exercise for any internal promotion to Partner. In most cases, a firm is only going to promote you if they feel they have to in order to protect their business. This means they need to feel that if you were to leave, a significant amount of clients and work would go with you.

Now that you understand why a business plan is necessary, the question is, what information should you include? Here are our thoughts on building a business plan for law firm partner.

What Do Law Firms Want to See?

For the most part, a company will want to see a breakdown of your financial performance. You will need to demonstrate not only how much money you have brought in in the past, but also project what you will post in your first few months with the firm.

In the context of a business plan, financial performance means three different things – all of which are important, although different firms will place different weighting on them. They are:

  • Client Partner Billings: The total revenue which the firm gets from the clients you manage or “own”. If you are moving, then it is the total value to the new firm of having the clients you can bring
  • Matter Partner Billings: The total revenue from all the files which you are in charge of, including the billings of your subordinates or fee earners in other teams. This demonstrates the overall value of your caseload.
  • Personal Billing: The revenue generated directly from your time, whether on your own files or other people’s.  

Anticipating your revenue is a precise art and needs to be done with the utmost care. A law firm will hold you accountable for your figures, so it is essential that you do not inflate or under-value your estimations. Instead, you should thoroughly analyse the strength of your contacts and how much work you believe you will get from them. Another point is to pick out those who may have followed you from previous practices, as they will also add to your value. 

How to Begin

When building a business plan for law firm partner, it is essential that you are able to quickly pull out the information that will prove most valuable. This is why you should begin with an executive summary.

Your summary should ideally be a one page cover sheet that summarises all the main points in your plan. It needs to be concise and capture the essence of your business plan, especially your financial projections. Once this has been done, you are ready to move on to the rest of your proposal. Here are the elements we think you should include:

Set Your Objectives

The first main section you should include when building a business plan for law firm partner is an analysis of the key objectives you want to set yourself. You should then outline how you intend to meet these targets and what your strategies will be.

There are many different ways you can demonstrate how you will hit your goals. Here are just a few:

  • Expanding existing relationships: list contacts you already work with and how you intend to increase the revenue they bring in.
  • Identifying important sectors : identify which areas of the market you will expand your operations in and why.
  • Using your reputation : discuss how your prominence in the industry can be harnessed to bring in business.
  • Providing extra services : explain how you will use your experience to provide additional services to the firm’s existing clients.
  • Enhancing pitches : outline how you can help the company improve the way it bids for a specific type of work.

You should also set out a few paragraphs underneath this to provide more information about your practice and how it will add value to the firm. Alongside this, it is a good idea to discuss your reasons for wanting to move – both social and economic.

Analyse the Markets

The next step is to take a detailed look at the specific market you will be working in. Are there any issues or trends that could impact the demand for legal services? What opportunities would be available to you?

You should also outline the specific geographical areas that you will service in your first few years at the practice. Ideally, this needs to be a mix of new and existing markets. Once you have done this, go into further detail about the precise industry sectors you will focus on and list the major participants in this area, plus the reasons why they are important. 

Outline Your Clients and Financials

Now we have arrived at arguably the most important part of building a business plan for law firm partner. This is where you identify the clients you think will be able to bring in quality work for the business, plus your financial information.

When listing your clients, you should identify the significant clients and discuss in detail the type of work you have carried out for them and what your measurable outcomes were – such as fees. If this is a plan for a new firm, then be specific about the clients but do not name them. That would be a flagrant breach of your duty of confidentiality and at this stage it would not be appropriate to expose yourself to that risk. Simply call them “Client A”, “Client B” etc.

You should also consider identifying opportunities to further develop your clientele. If the plan is for a move, then you should think about how you could get extra work from existing clients of the firm that those clients don’t send in at the moment. If it is an internal plan, then target existing clients of your current firm that you do not presently work for. Also, set out which new clients you want to target and why. 

In terms of financials, you should outline your billing hours over the last three years. These include the hours you billed to your own clients, your current firm’s or other partner’s clients, plus any productive non-billable hours. If there are any figures you feel need explaining, such as an unusually low or high billing, consider adding a footnote underneath.

The next things you should list are your personal charge out rate for the last three years and your billings, collections and referrals. For the latter section, you should differentiate between your own billings and referrals you made to other teams, with the total amount underneath. You also need to include fees you earned from clients of another partner, where you were the main ‘matter partner’.

Finally, you need to outline the compensation you have received in the last three years. This includes your basic salary, monthly draw, plus any bonuses you may have received.

Look at Business Development

The next major area you should include when building a business plan for law firm partner is business development. There are four main sections that are important to mention, which are:

Provide a breakdown of your current team, including their position, how much of their time is dedicated to your case work and whether they are in part or full time employment. If there is anybody within your team that you wish to bring with you to your new firm, explain why this would be a good idea and list their current and expected remuneration, plus the hours they billed in the last year.

You may also need to request extra support from your new firm, in addition to your current team. If this is the case, be sure to outline who they are (for example, a junior associate) and why you believe they are necessary. A potential reason is that you envisage you will grow the business dramatically and want to focus on the more high-end clients – meaning you would need an assistant to carry out the day-to-day lawyering work.

Time Allocation

If you are intending to bring in a lot more business for the firm, or focus on new markets, you will need to outline how much time you wish to spend on this. Remember that you will also be expected to harness and grow existing clients, so it is essential that you demonstrate you are able to divide your time effectively. 


The next thing you should outline is what marketing initiatives you intend to pursue during the next financial year. These include any sponsorships you will undertake, the conferences or seminars you plan on attending, speaking engagements and any articles you intend to write for external publication. 

If there are any specific initiatives you think the firm should pursue, such as training in key areas, be sure to include this as well. It would be a good idea to also outline why this is important and, if possible, identify potential providers to work with.


Like any business, the law firm will want you to outline how much you expect your ventures will cost. Each time you identify something that you will need the company to provide, whether it is additional team members, a sponsorship opportunity, or extra training, you need to ensure you fully work out how much this will cost.

How You Fit Their Culture

It is important to outline why you believe you will be a good fit for the firm. After all, the company will want to know if they can work with you professionally – regardless of the amount of money you will bring in or what your plans will be. If two candidates sound the same on paper, then the business will likely go with the one they feel will integrate better into their culture. To determine whether you will be a good fit, you should carry out detailed research into the company and utilise any contacts within your network who may be able to help.

Now that you understand the basics of building a business plan for law firm partner, you should be confident in your ability to achieve your dream job. Once you have completed your plan, you may feel that you need an extra pair of eyes to advise you on any areas that may need to be tweaked. While this could come from another lawyer, you might find it more beneficial to contact a specialist legal recruiter. 

Having somebody that lives and breathes the legal market in your corner could enhance your prospects in a number of areas. They will first of all be able to offer independent, and sometimes critical, input into both your client list and proposed billings. 

An experienced recruiter will also be able to give your prospects of success a health-check and advise on how to fine-tune your sales pitch. In addition, they are likely to have an in-depth knowledge of the firm you are applying with, meaning they can give you essential information about the company and its culture that you may not otherwise have access to – thereby giving you a potential advantage over your competition. What is more, they could even provide details on other opportunities you may want to consider based on your experience. 

If you believe that your business plan could benefit from the expertise of a specialist legal recruiter, contact Jepson Holt today. We will review your document and provide expert assistance to give you the best possible chance of success. For further information, you can also read our free eBook entitled: “Taking Control of Your Legal Career” . This handy guide details everything you need to know about progressing in your career and the actions you should take. At Jepson Holt, we aim to help you get the most out of your working life as possible. 

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19 Mar 2020

How to Write Your Law Firm Business Plan

Cari Twitchell

By Cari Twitchell

News Articles Healthy Strategy

Every new law practice needs a business plan . This is a guide to creating one.

Here is what should go in your business plan once you’ve decided about your law firm business model.

Section One: Executive Summary

This section provides a succinct overview of your full plan. It should also include the following:

  • Mission statement.  This statement should be one or two sentences at most, so you can quickly state it off the top of your head at any given moment. It should clearly state your value and offer inspiration and guidance, while being plausible and specific enough to ensure relevancy. For further direction on how to write a mission statement, read this Entrepreneur article .
  • Core values.  Your core values outline the strategy that underpins your business. When written well, they help potential employees and clients understand what drives you every day. When written incorrectly, they include meaningless platitudes that become yet another thing forgotten or ignored during practice. To pack the most punch into your core values, write them as actionable statements that you can follow. And keep them to a minimum: two to four should do just fine. You can read more about writing core values at  Kinesis .
  • What sets you apart.  If you are like every other attorney out there, how will you stand out? This is known as your unique selling proposition (USP). What is it that will convince clients to turn to you instead of your competition? By clearly stating your USP, you identify what it is about your firm that will ensure your success.

Are you feeling slightly overwhelmed by all of this? Then write this section last, as you’ll find much of what you write here is a summary of everything you include in subsequent sections.

Section Two: Company Description

Write a succinct overview of your company. Here is what it should cover:

  • Mission statement and values.  Reiterate your mission statement and core values here.
  • Geographic location and areas served.  Identify where your offices are located and the geographic areas that you serve.
  • Legal structure and ownership. State whether you are an LLC, S-Corp or other legal entity. If you are something other than a sole proprietor, identify the ownership structure of your firm. How does your law firm business model influence the ownership type?
  • Firm history.  If you are writing or updating a plan for a law firm already in existence, write a brief history that summarizes firm highlights and achievements.

This section is often the shortest. Do not spend much time or space here. Touch on the major points and move on.

Section Three: Market Analysis

Done correctly, a well thought out market analysis will help you identify exactly what your potential clients are looking for and how much you should charge for your services. It also enables you to identify your competitors’ weaknesses, which in turn helps you best frame your services in a way that attracts your preferred clientele. You probably already considered some of these subjects when deciding on the small law firm business model, but you need to document them.

Elements of a market analysis include:

  • Industry description.  Draft up a summary that encompasses where your particular legal niche is today, where it has been, and which trends will likely affect it in the future. Identify everything from actual market size to project market growth.
  • Target audience.  Define your target audience by building your ideal client persona. Use demographics such as location, age, family status, occupation and more. Map out the motivations behind their seeking your services and then how it is you are best able to satisfy their requirements.
  • Competitive analysis.  This is where you dive into details about your competitors. What do they do well? Where do they fall short? How are they currently underserving your target market? What challenges do you face by entering legal practice in your field of choice?
  • Projections.  Provide specific data on how much your target audience has to spend. Then narrow that down to identify how much you can charge per service.

A proper market analysis includes actual data to support your analysis. If you are unsure of where to find data, Bplans  has a great list of resources for you to use. And if you would like to read further about conducting a market analysis, check out this article from the Small Business Administration.

Section Four: Organization & Management

This section goes into detail about you and any others who may have ownership interest in the firm. The small law firm business model section here should incorporated into the management documentation. Do not be afraid to brag a bit!

  • What is your educational background?
  • What experience do you currently have?
  • Why are you the right person to run your firm?

If there are other individuals involved, it is a good idea to insert your organizational chart here. Visuals help quickly convey information and break up otherwise blocky text.

Section Five: Services

The Services section is the heart of your law firm business model plan. It is where you dive into all aspects of your services, including:

  • The problem(s) you are addressing.  What pain points do your preferred clients experience? What can they do right now to alleviate those pain points? Answer these questions, and then take the extra step to explain how those current solutions fail to adequately address their problems.
  • The solution(s) you are providing.  This describes how your solutions better resolve your prospective market’s needs. This not only includes the actual work you do, but the benefits that each client will receive based on your work.
  • An overview of your competition.  Describe your competition here. For instance, which other solo attorneys and firms provide the same solutions as you? What are your advantages over these competitors? What do you differently when providing your solutions? How will clients gain additional benefits by seeking out your services instead of working with your competitors?

Section 6: Marketing Strategy

Your marketing strategy section needs to address the three P’s:

  • Positioning.  How will you position your law firm and your services? What will you say to present your practice in the best light? What short statements can you use to entice a potential client to pursue your services?
  • Pricing.  How much will you charge? How does that fit within the legal industry? Within your niche industry? What do clients receive for that price?
  • Promotion.  Which sales channels and marketing activities will you pursue to promote your practice? Who is in charge of these activities? Even if you plan to build your law firm on the basis of word-of-mouth referrals, you must remember that most referrals will still look for information about you before contacting you. Know where they will look and ensure you are there.

Section Seven: Financials

Last comes the financials section. It is the key component to your plan if you are going to seek funding to get your practice off the ground. It is imperative that you complete this section even if you are not seeking funding, however, as you need to paint a clear financial picture before opening your doors.

Two main items make up this section: budgeting and forecasting (sales and cash flow). Answer these questions to help you address these items:

  • How much starting capital do you need?
  • How much money will it cost to keep your practice operating on a month-to-month basis?
  • How many cases will you need to close each month to break even?
  • How many cases would you need to close to make a profit?
  • What is your projected profit and loss for the year?

This section often incorporates graphs and other images, including profit-and-loss and cash-flow tables. The more specific you get with your numbers, the more likely you are to succeed!

One final note: If your goal is to submit your business plan to potential funders, you want to do everything you can to make sure your plan stands out. One good way to do this is to work with a designer to artfully format your plan. Great presentation can take you a long way.

Originally published 2017-09-23. Republished 2020-07-31.

Cari Twitchell

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Last updated October 7th, 2022

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How to Draft a Law Firm Business Plan

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Law firms are something more than a business. Law firms and the lawyers within them are engaged in a profession, with obligations that go beyond purely commercial concerns.

Listen to this article:   Click here to play this audio clip

This truth can obscure the need for lawyers to pay attention to the business management side of their practices: their finances, marketing plans, business development efforts, IT purchases, lease terms and capital needs. For the highly trained lawyer, such concerns may feel at best like an afterthought, or at worst a nuisance that steals time from their true occupation: the “practice of law.”

And yet, those annoying business details are responsible for keeping the lights on. While law firms may be more than a business, there is, in fact, a large and necessary business element to them. For solo practices and small firms in particular, investing time into the business management side of legal practice can make a major difference in the financial rewards they derive from it—or even their survival. Firms that have failed to do so in the past (and even those that haven’t) can get a handle on their law practice business management by taking the step of drafting a business plan.


We’ll discuss the components of a business plan in a moment, but first, let’s talk about why this exercise is valuable. For another type of business, a business plan may be useful in attracting investors or securing financing. Law firms should not think of their business plans as utilitarian documents in that sense (although someday one could prove helpful in obtaining a line of credit, say, or attracting lateral partners). Instead, the primary value of the business plan, particularly for the solo practice or small firm drafting one for the first time, lies in the fact that it forces the firm to think about business issues that it otherwise would not have considered.

As the D.C. Bar says in its advice to startup law offices : “The act of planning helps you think things through thoroughly, study and research if you are not sure of the facts, and look at your ideas critically. It takes time now, but avoids costly, perhaps disastrous, mistakes later.”

Of course, a business plan does little for anyone if it is quickly forgotten. But the mere act of generating a business plan gives a firm a direction to head in and goals to point toward. If the firm makes it a practice to revisit the business plan on an annual basis (if not more regularly), its business considerations will stay top-of-mind and the firm will continually refine them in ways that improve its performance.


Creating a strong business plan will require an investment of time and energy. At the same time, no one wants to write, or read, a massive document. To improve the chances that the project gets done, and gets read, it is best to keep a business plan to a reasonable length. Anything over 20 pages may stretch attention spans to the breaking point, and there’s no harm in going shorter if you have covered all the territory you need to by that point.

So, what, exactly, is the territory that you should cover? Most authorities agree that a sound business plan for a law firm should address the following broad areas:

  • Overview of the Firm

This section should include basic information about the firm: its name, legal structure, practice areas and leadership positions. It should also contain some deeper information about the firm's identity and aspirations.

This would include:

A mission statement about the firm’s purpose

A vision statement or recitation of medium- and long-term goals for the firm

Important aspects of the firm’s history

Any important philosophies that the firm brings to legal practice

  • Market Analysis

This section should discuss the business trends affecting the firm’s important practice areas and clients. It should evaluate any technologies that are affecting your practice area and consider how the firm may leverage or keep up with them. This section should also devote substantial energy to identifying the firm’s major competitors in each of its important practice areas and comparing their services to the firm’s.

In this section, identify the firm’s major clients, breaking them down by important characteristics like size, location, industry and practice groups used. Go through a similar exercise for major client prospects and targets. It’s worth examining how the firm can improve its relationships with both of these groups.

Important financial information includes the firm’s fixed and variable costs, backward- and forward-looking revenue, realization rate, collection rate, monthly overhead, assets and liabilities. A 12-month profit and loss projection should be included and could be considered the heart of the business plan.

There is a great amount of detail that any firm could get into on this front. Don’t get overwhelmed by it; at the same time, this is some of the most important information in the business plan, so it’s not advisable to gloss over it.

This section will address key operational issues like the office lease, equipment purchases and technology plans. You may assign roles to various staff members for operational issues.

Think about what marketing the firm currently performs, how it obtains clients and what marketing goals it wants to set for the future.

After completing these and any other sections the firm might want to address, then go back and draft an executive summary to be included at the beginning of the business plan document. The summary should be professional, but don’t be afraid to give it some optimistic energy. After all, with your eyes on the business management fundamentals of your firm, things should be looking up for the future.

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Law Firm Business Plan Template

Written by Dave Lavinsky

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Law Firm Plan

Over the past 20+ years, we have helped over 1,000 lawyers to create business plans to start and grow their law firms. On this page, we will first give you some background information with regards to the importance of business planning. We will then go through a law firm business plan template step-by-step so you can create your plan today.

Download our Ultimate Business Plan Template here >

What is a Law Firm Business Plan?

A business plan provides a snapshot of your law firm as it stands today, and lays out your growth plan for the next five years. It explains your business goals and your strategy for reaching them. It also includes market research to support your plans.

Why You Need a Business Plan for a Law Firm

If you’re looking to start a law firm, or grow your existing law firm, you need a business plan. A business plan will help you raise funding, if needed, and plan out the growth of your law firm in order to improve your chances of success. Your law firm plan is a living document that should be updated annually as your company grows and changes.

Sources of Funding for Law Firms

With regards to funding, the main sources of funding for a law firm are personal savings, credit cards and bank loans. With regards to bank loans, banks will want to review your business plan and gain confidence that you will be able to repay your loan and interest. To acquire this confidence, the loan officer will not only want to confirm that your financials are reasonable, but they will also want to see a professional plan. Such a plan will give them the confidence that you can successfully and professionally operate a business.

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How to write a business plan for a law firm.

If you want to start a law firm or expand your current one, you need a business plan. Below are links to each section of your law firm plan template:

Executive Summary

Your executive summary provides an introduction to your business plan, but it is normally the last section you write because it provides a summary of each key section of your plan.

The goal of your Executive Summary is to quickly engage the reader. Explain to them the type of law firm you are operating and the status. For example, are you a startup, do you have a law firm that you would like to grow, or are you operating law firms in multiple cities?

Next, provide an overview of each of the subsequent sections of your plan. For example, give a brief overview of the law firm industry. Discuss the type of law firm you are operating. Detail your direct competitors. Give an overview of your target customers. Provide a snapshot of your marketing plan. Identify the key members of your team. And offer an overview of your financial plan.  

Company Analysis

In your company analysis, you will detail the type of law firm you are operating.

For example, you might operate one of the following types of law firms:

  • Commercial Law : this type of law firm focuses on financial matters such as merger and acquisition, raising capital, IPOs, etc.
  • Criminal, Civil Negligence, and Personal Injury Law: this type of business focuses on accidents, malpractice, and criminal defense.
  • Real Estate Law: this type of practice deals with property transactions and property use.
  • Labor Law: this type of firm handles everything related to employment, from pensions/benefits, to contract negotiation.

In addition to explaining the type of law firm you will operate, the Company Analysis section of your business plan needs to provide background on the business.

Include answers to question such as:

  • When and why did you start the business?
  • What milestones have you achieved to date? Milestones could include the number of clients served, number of cases won, etc.
  • Your legal structure. Are you incorporated as an S-Corp? An LLC? A sole proprietorship? Explain your legal structure here.

Industry Analysis

In your industry analysis, you need to provide an overview of the law firm industry.

While this may seem unnecessary, it serves multiple purposes.

First, researching the law firm industry educates you. It helps you understand the market in which you are operating.

Secondly, market research can improve your strategy, particularly if your research identifies market trends.

The third reason for market research is to prove to readers that you are an expert in your industry. By conducting the research and presenting it in your plan, you achieve just that.

The following questions should be answered in the industry analysis section of your law firm plan:

  • How big is the law firm industry (in dollars)?
  • Is the market declining or increasing?
  • Who are the key competitors in the market?
  • Who are the key suppliers in the market?
  • What trends are affecting the industry?
  • What is the industry’s growth forecast over the next 5 – 10 years?
  • What is the relevant market size? That is, how big is the potential market for your law firm? You can extrapolate such a figure by assessing the size of the market in the entire country and then applying that figure to your local population.

Customer Analysis

The customer analysis section of your law firm plan must detail the customers you serve and/or expect to serve.

The following are examples of customer segments: businesses, households, and government organizations.

As you can imagine, the customer segment(s) you choose will have a great impact on the type of law firm you operate. Clearly, households would respond to different marketing promotions than nonprofit organizations, for example.

Try to break out your target customers in terms of their demographic and psychographic profiles. With regards to demographics, include a discussion of the ages, genders, locations and income levels of the customers you seek to serve. Because most law firms primarily serve customers living in their same city or town, such demographic information is easy to find on government websites.

Psychographic profiles explain the wants and needs of your target customers. The more you can understand and define these needs, the better you will do in attracting and retaining your customers.

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Competitive Analysis

Your competitive analysis should identify the indirect and direct competitors your business faces and then focus on the latter.

Direct competitors are other law firms.

Indirect competitors are other options that customers have to purchase from that aren’t direct competitors. This includes accounting firms or human resources companies. You need to mention such competition as well.

With regards to direct competition, you want to describe the other law firms with which you compete. Most likely, your direct competitors will be law firms located very close to your location.

For each such competitor, provide an overview of their businesses and document their strengths and weaknesses. Unless you once worked at your competitors’ businesses, it will be impossible to know everything about them. But you should be able to find out key things about them such as:

  • What types of customers do they serve?
  • What types of cases do they accept?
  • What is their pricing (premium, low, etc.)?
  • What are they good at?
  • What are their weaknesses?

With regards to the last two questions, think about your answers from the customers’ perspective. And don’t be afraid to ask your competitors’ customers what they like most and least about them.

The final part of your competitive analysis section is to document your areas of competitive advantage. For example:

  • Will you provide better legal advice and services?
  • Will you provide services that your competitors don’t offer?
  • Will you provide more responsive customer interactions?
  • Will you offer better pricing or flexible pricing options?

Think about ways you will outperform your competition and document them in this section of your plan.  

Marketing Plan

Traditionally, a marketing plan includes the four P’s: Product, Price, Place, and Promotion. For a law firm plan, your marketing plan should include the following:

Product : In the product section, you should reiterate the type of law firm company that you documented in your Company Analysis. Then, detail the specific products you will be offering. For example, in addition to in-person consultation, will you provide virtual meetings, or any other services?

Price : Document the prices you will offer and how they compare to your competitors. Essentially in the product and price sub-sections of your marketing plan, you are presenting the products and services you offer and their prices.

Place : Place refers to the location of your law firm company. Document your location and mention how the location will impact your success. For example, is your law firm located in a busy business district, office building, etc. Discuss how your location might be the ideal location for your customers.

Promotions : The final part of your law firm marketing plan is the promotions section. Here you will document how you will drive customers to your location(s). The following are some promotional methods you might consider:

  • Advertising in local papers and magazines
  • Reaching out to local websites
  • Social media marketing
  • Local radio advertising

Operations Plan

While the earlier sections of your business plan explained your goals, your operations plan describes how you will meet them. Your operations plan should have two distinct sections as follows.

Everyday short-term processes include all of the tasks involved in running your law firm, including filling and filing paperwork, researching precedents, appearing in court, meeting with clients, etc.

Long-term goals are the milestones you hope to achieve. These could include the dates when you expect to file your 100th lawsuit, or be on retainer with 25 business clients, or when you hope to reach $X in revenue. It could also be when you expect to expand your law firm to a new city.  

Management Team

To demonstrate your law firm’ ability to succeed, a strong management team is essential. Highlight your key players’ backgrounds, emphasizing those skills and experiences that prove their ability to grow a company.

Ideally you and/or your team members have direct experience in managing law firms. If so, highlight this experience and expertise. But also highlight any experience that you think will help your business succeed.

If your team is lacking, consider assembling an advisory board. An advisory board would include 2 to 8 individuals who would act like mentors to your business. They would help answer questions and provide strategic guidance. If needed, look for advisory board members with legal experience or with a track record of successfully running small businesses.  

Financial Plan

Your financial plan should include your 5-year financial statement broken out both monthly or quarterly for the first year and then annually. Your financial statements include your income statement, balance sheet and cash flow statements.

Income Statement : an income statement is more commonly called a Profit and Loss statement or P&L. It shows your revenues and then subtracts your costs to show whether you turned a profit or not.

In developing your income statement, you need to devise assumptions. For example, will you file 25 lawsuits per month or sign 5 retainer contracts per month? And will sales grow by 2% or 10% per year? As you can imagine, your choice of assumptions will greatly impact the financial forecasts for your business. As much as possible, conduct research to try to root your assumptions in reality.

Balance Sheets : Balance sheets show your assets and liabilities. While balance sheets can include much information, try to simplify them to the key items you need to know about. For instance, if you spend $50,000 on building out your law firm, this will not give you immediate profits. Rather it is an asset that will hopefully help you generate profits for years to come. Likewise, if a bank writes you a check for $50,000, you don’t need to pay it back immediately. Rather, that is a liability you will pay back over time.

Cash Flow Statement : Your cash flow statement will help determine how much money you need to start or grow your business, and make sure you never run out of money. What most entrepreneurs and business owners don’t realize is that you can turn a profit but run out of money and go bankrupt.

In developing your Income Statement and Balance Sheets be sure to include several of the key costs needed in starting or growing a law firm:

  • Location build-out including design fees, construction, etc.
  • Cost of licensing, software, and office supplies
  • Payroll or salaries paid to staff
  • Business insurance
  • Taxes and permits
  • Legal expenses

Attach your full financial projections in the appendix of your plan along with any supporting documents that make your plan more compelling. For example, you might include your office location lease or your certificate of admission to the bar.  

Putting together a business plan for your law firm is a worthwhile endeavor. If you follow the template above, by the time you are done, you will truly be an expert and know everything you need about starting a law firm business plan; once you create your plan, download it to PDF to show banks and investors. You will really understand the law firm industry, your competition, and your customers. You will have developed a marketing plan and will really understand what it takes to launch and grow a successful law firm.  

Law Firm Business Plan FAQs

What is the easiest way to complete my law firm business plan.

Growthink's Ultimate Business Plan Template allows you to quickly and easily complete your Law Firm Business Plan.

What is the Goal of a Business Plan's Executive Summary?

The goal of your Executive Summary is to quickly engage the reader. Explain to them the type of law firm you are operating and the status; for example, are you a startup, do you have a law firm that you would like to grow, or are you operating a chain of law firms?

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Get the most out of your business plan example

Follow these tips to quickly develop a working business plan from this sample.

1. Don't worry about finding an exact match

We have over 550 sample business plan templates . So, make sure the plan is a close match, but don't get hung up on the details.

Your business is unique and will differ from any example or template you come across. So, use this example as a starting point and customize it to your needs.

2. Remember it's just an example

Our sample business plans are examples of what one business owner did. That doesn't make them perfect or require you to cram your business idea to fit the plan structure.

Use the information, financials, and formatting for inspiration. It will speed up and guide the plan writing process.

3. Know why you're writing a business plan

To create a plan that fits your needs , you need to know what you intend to do with it.

Are you planning to use your plan to apply for a loan or pitch to investors? Then it's worth following the format from your chosen sample plan to ensure you cover all necessary information.

But, if you don't plan to share your plan with anyone outside of your business—you likely don't need everything.

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Law Firm Business Plan

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If you are a lawyer, chances are you have thought of owning a law firm at least once if not more.

After all, having your firm gives you the freedom of taking up projects that you like and working at flexible hours.

But with freedom comes responsibility, and most of us find the thought of doing everything from onboarding clients to taking care of every detail of their case at least in the initial days quite overwhelming.

But don’t worry! It isn’t as scary as it looks. All you need to run a successful law firm is your sharp wit to deal with cases and a well-written law firm business plan to deal with the business side of your profession.

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Free Law Firm Business Plan Template

Download our free business plan template now and pave the way to success. Let’s turn your vision into an actionable strategy!

  • Fill in the blanks – Outline
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Industry Overview

The global legal services market was valued at a whopping sum of 849.28 billion dollars in 2020 and is expected to rise at a high rate going forward too.

The main changes in the legal industry have been brought about by the introduction of AI which does proofreading and data research jobs with higher efficiency. This lets the lawyers focus on what really matters.

Also, the security and access systems have become loads better due to cloud computing.

What is Law Firm Business Plan?

A law firm business plan is a document that outlines your business goals and strategies to achieve those goals. It includes your law firm overview, your reason to start your firm, the services you will offer, a budget or funding requirements, and strategies to get and manage your clients.

Why Law Firm Business Plan is Important?

A business plan would help you understand what sets you apart from your competitors, and how you can market your USP to your clients.

It also helps you design strategies to reach out to your clients and manage them. It comes in extremely handy for analyzing the loopholes in your business structure.

Moreover, it helps you identify your strengths and work on your weaknesses.

All in all, It can make managing your business a hassle-free and less chaotic process.

Things to Consider Before Writing a Law Firm Business Plan

Focus on your expertise.

Between juggling business and practice, it is natural that practice gets neglected more often than not. But always keep in mind that though focusing on your business is important it shouldn’t come at the cost of skills you need to develop and upgrade to do well as a lawyer.

Also, it is important to decide on a niche so you can dig deeper and become an expert at handling cases of that kind.

Create a proper website

In today’s world being present and active on the internet is as important for your business as being good at what you do.

A strong web presence helps you reach out to your customers as well as builds your reliability for them.

Build your network

Networking is an important aspect of being a lawyer. From getting new customers, getting updates on the legal world, and even collecting evidence if you are a criminal lawyer, a good network can work wonders for your legal business.

The kind of circle you belong to also has an impact on your reputation and image as a lawyer.

Develop soft skills

We all know that confidence and intellect are a lawyer’s best friends. And although it is an ongoing process to develop these skills, it is good to get a head start before you start your business.

Intellect helps you upgrade and pay attention to detail, and confidence helps you sound more convincing and reliable. Both of which are foundational to a legal business.

How to Write a Law Firm Business Plan?

A law firm business plan would be a combination of segments common to all business plans and segments specific to a law firm.

Before you start writing your business plan for your new law firm, spend as much time as you can reading through some examples of  consulting-related business plans .

Reading some sample business plans will give you a good idea of what you’re aiming for. It will also show you the different sections that different entrepreneurs include and the language they use to write about themselves and their business plans.

We have created this sample law firm business plan for you to get a good idea about how a perfect law firm business plan should look like and what details you will need to include in your stunning business plan.

Chalking out Your Business Plan

Starting your own law firm is an exciting prospect for any lawyer. Having your firm gives you more independence, lets you implement ideas you want to, and most importantly, you get to deal with clients firsthand.

And if you plan on starting your own, do so with a proper business plan.

But you might wonder, why do I need a business plan as a lawyer, isn’t my legal knowledge and years of work enough?

The answer is no.

To run a law firm you need a law degree, but to run a successful business you need a business plan alongside your degree.

Law Firm Business Plan Outline

This is the standard law firm business plan outline which will cover all important sections that you should include in your business plan.

  • Mission Statement
  • Vision Statement
  • Financial Summary
  • 3 Year profit forecast
  • Business Structure
  • Startup cost
  • Market Analysis
  • Market Trends
  • Target Market
  • Market Segmentation
  • Sales Strategy
  • Marketing Strategy
  • Pricing Strategy
  • Personnel Plan
  • Financial Plan
  • Important Assumptions
  • Brake-even Analysis
  • Profit Yearly
  • Gross Margin Yearly
  • Projected Cash Flow
  • Projected Balance Sheet
  • Business Ratios

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Now, let’s understand how you can complete each section of your business plan.

1. Executive Summary

The executive summary forms the first page of your business plan. It acts as a pitch for your business to potential investors and should consist of the following sections.

  • Objective: This gives an overview of what you wish to accomplish with your business. The objective should be clear and solve an existing problem in the market.
  • Vision Statement: This should state what vision you have for your business. How do you want it to function and how far do you expect to reach with it. You can also include how your vision sits with the current market situation.
  • Financial Summary: This section should ideally consist of the history of your finances and their current state. A proper financial summary helps you gain an investor’s confidence and makes it easier for your business to get funded.

2. Company Summary

Next up we have the company summary section, this segment provides an overview of your company’s structure and its functioning.

This section provides a brief description of the following:

  • Legal Structure: This section would describe the legal terms and conditions your firm functions on, as well as the ownership structure of your firm.
  • USP: This would consist of points that set your firm apart from your competitor’s firm.
  • Services: This section will include the services you offer, the legal procedures you are well versed in, all in all, the client base you cater to.
  • Location: This segment covers your area of service and the location of your firm. A clearly stated area of service, helps you reach the right audience.

3. Market analysis

This segment consists of a thorough analysis of the market situation. It can be split up into the following sub-segments.

  • Market Trends: This would consist of all the prevailing trends in the market. It is important to know market trends because it helps your business keep up with the evolving market.
  • Target Market:  This section would consist of a summary of the market you cater to. Clearly defining your niche helps you reach out to your desired customer base.
  • Market Segmentation: In this section, note down the segments present in the market, as well as what segment of the market your business would fit in. This would help you narrow down the number of competitors you have, the strategies you must follow, and the major and additional services you should offer.

4. Strategy and implementations

In this section, you would include various business strategies like:

  • Marketing strategy You can formulate a marketing strategy depending on your target audience and the easiest and most effective ways of reaching out to them. It is important to formulate your marketing strategy based on your USP and your vision statement.
  • Pricing Strategy It is important to formulate a pricing strategy based on the market trends, the nature of the work, and your target audience.
  • Milestones This segment would consist of the various milestones your business would have to reach to achieve your goal and the strategies to help you reach them.

5. Financial Plan

The financial section of your business plan would consist of the following information regarding your business.

  • Financial history
  • Current State of finances
  • Profit and loss

Download a sample law firm business plan

Need help writing your business plan from scratch? Here you go;  download our free law firm business plan pdf  to start.

It’s a modern business plan template specifically designed for your law firm business. Use the example business plan as a guide for writing your own.

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Law Firm Business Plan Summary

All of the above segments would help you in creating a well-rounded business plan. Starting your law firm with a well-written business plan can make your growth process faster and smoother.

After getting started with Upmetrics , you can copy this law firm business plan example into your business plan and modify the required information and download your law firm business plan pdf or doc file.

It’s the fastest and easiest way to start writing your business plan.

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Law Firm Business Plan Template

Written by Dave Lavinsky

Law Firm Business Plan

You’ve come to the right place to create your Law Firm business plan.

We have helped over 1,000 entrepreneurs and business owners create business plans and many have used them to start or grow their Law Firms.

Below is a template to help you create each section of your Law Firm business plan.

Executive Summary

Business overview.

The Harris & Harris Law Firm is a startup up business that provides legal advice and services for clients located within the Scottsdale, Arizona region. The company is founded by Roger Harris and his son, Anthony. Roger Harris has been a partner in a well-established company, Foundations Law Firm, for over twenty years. Anthony Harris is a recent law school graduate who will begin his training under the scholarship of his father. With the extensive list of former clients in hand, Roger and Anthony are confident they can begin open their doors for business and grow the new law firm successfully.

Harris & Harris Law Firm will provide a comprehensive array of services for individuals or business entities who need advice and/or legal representation in court proceedings. Harris & Harris will provide a multi-prong approach to fashion specific solutions for each individual they represent; in that regard, all services are custom-packaged and provided for clients by the lawyers at Harris & Harris. This unique factor will set them above all other area lawyers, as most follow standard processes within the companies where they work.

Product Offering

The following are the services that Harris & Harris Law Firm will provide:

  • Client-centric efforts in every case until resolution is found
  • Unique process to fully explore client options in any dispute
  • Creative and sustainable solutions on a case-by-case basis
  • Prioritization of client needs above all else
  • Dedication to professionalism and honesty
  • Equally dedicated to securing the correct outcomes for our clients
  • Team of highly-skilled lawyers who create winning solutions

Customer Focus

Harris & Harris will target the residents of Scottsdale, Arizona. They will also target medium-to-large businesses within Scottsdale, Arizona. They will target former associates and lawyers with whom they can collaborate in the future. They will target residents who have been served a summons for civil or criminal case appearances, whether as a witness, interested party or a potential defendant.

Management Team

Harris & Harris will be owned and operated by Roger Harris. He recruited his son, Anthony, to join the new firm upon Anthony’s recent graduation from law school. Within the next ten years, depending on performance, Anthony will receive incremental distributions of up to 49% of the company value in private stock. This will be based on Anthony’s performance and growth in the company as his role expands.

Roger Harris was formerly a partner in a well-established company, Foundations Law Firm, for over twenty years. He practiced law in the personal law arena, including wills and probates, trusts and other forms of personal law. He also managed the real estate law team at his former place of employment. Roger’s role in Harris & Harris will be the President, with the primary responsibility of driving new client traffic to the company. Roger has recruited Anthony, Richard Cummings, and Torey Crouch to begin their employment at Harris & Harris, as well.

Anthony Harris is a recent law school graduate who will begin his training under the scholarship of his father. Anthony will specialize in a unique processing of individual cases by creating algorithms that will specify which outcomes will best serve the client. Anthony will also represent clients in court and assist in defense appearances. With the extensive list of former clients in hand and the unique processes they’ve designed for clients going forward, Roger and Anthony are confident they can begin and grow the new law firm successfully.

Richard Cummings, a former associate of Roger Harris, will take on the role of Managing Partner in the launch of Harris & Harris. He will oversee all junior partners and staff, as the total number of lawyers grows expeditiously over the first few years.

Torey Crouch, a former law student with Anthony Cummings, will take on the role of Research & Records Manager, as she will form the background work necessary for all the other lawyers on staff.

Success Factors

Harris & Harris Law Firm will be able to achieve success by offering the following competitive advantages:

  • Friendly, knowledgeable, and highly-qualified team of Harris & Harris Law Firm
  • Comprehensive menu of services designed to provide specific customer-centric solutions
  • Specializations in real estate, trusts, probate, civil and criminal law are all offered under this multi-pronged services of Harris & Harris Law Firm
  • Harris & Harris offers family discounts and other forms of packages for clients.
  • Harris & Harris offers a “monthly pay” program for clients who need to spread out payments over time.

Financial Highlights

Harris & Harris Law Firm is seeking $200,000 in debt financing to launch its Harris & Harris Law Firm. The funding will be dedicated toward securing the office space and purchasing office equipment and supplies. Funding will also be dedicated toward three months of overhead costs to include payroll of the staff, rent, and marketing costs for the print ads and marketing costs. The breakout of the funding is below:

  • Office space build-out: $20,000
  • Office equipment, supplies, and materials: $10,000
  • Three months of overhead expenses (payroll, rent, utilities): $150,000
  • Marketing costs: $10,000
  • Working capital: $10,000

The following graph outlines the financial projections for Harris & Harris Law Firm.

Harris & Harris Law Firm Pro Forma Projections

Company Overview

Who is harris & harris law firm.

Harris & Harris Law Firm is a newly established, full-service law firm in Scottsdale, Arizona. Harris & Harris Law Firm will be the most reliable, solution-centric and effective choice for clients in Scottsdale and the surrounding communities. Harris & Harris Law Firm will provide a comprehensive menu of attorney services for any individual, family or business to utilize. Their full-service approach includes a comprehensive array of services that are uniquely prepared for each client.

  Harris & Harris Law Firm will be able to serve the residents and businesses of Scottsdale. The team of professionals are highly qualified and experienced in all aspects of the law and several permutations of legal representation. Harris & Harris Law Firm removes all headaches and issues of securing a comprehensive law firm that is reliable and dedicated to clients, and ensures all issues are taken care of expeditiously, while delivering the best customer service.

Harris & Harris Law Firm History

Since incorporation, Harris & Harris Law Firm has achieved the following milestones:

  • Registered Harris & Harris Law Firm, LLC to transact business in the state of Arizona.
  • Has a contract for 10,000 square feet of office space midtown Scottsdale office buildings
  • Reached out to numerous former clients and contacts to consider Harris & Harris for all their legal representation needs.
  • Began recruiting a staff of five lawyers and three office personnel to work at Harris & Harris.

Harris & Harris Law Firm Services

The following will be the services Harris & Harris Law Firm will provide:

  • Dedication to professionalism and honest dialogue

Industry Analysis

The law firm industry is expected to grow over the next five years to over $75 billion. The growth will be driven by an increased population requiring legal representation The growth will be driven by the increase of income for individuals, which can support the decision to hire representation. The growth will be driven by the increase in faulty or misleading documents, agreements, and certifications. The growth will be driven by legal firms who collect fees for business mergers and negotiations. Costs will likely be reduced as current technology becomes dated and new, higher-performing technological advances are employed.

Customer Analysis

Demographic profile of target market, customer segmentation.

Harris & Harris Law Firm will primarily target the following customer profiles:

  • Residents of Scottsdale region
  • Businesses within Scottsdale region
  • Former associates and clients with whom they can collaborate
  • Individuals or businesses that have been served with a summons to appear in court

Competitive Analysis

Direct and indirect competitors.

Harris & Harris Law Firm will face competition from other companies with similar business profiles. A description of each competitor company is below.

Diamond & Johnson Defense

Diamond & Johnson Defense is a law firm located in Phoenix, Arizona. The firm was established in 1998 and has three partners who oversee all cases: Robert Anderson, who is a lead criminal defense attorney; Lisa Martinez, who is a criminal appeals and post-conviction relief attorney, and David Collin, an investigations and trial preparation lawyer. The law firm has a total of six attorneys who specialize in criminal defense, and six office staff, who communicate directly with each lawyer on staff.

Diamond & Johnson Defense is known as “The Defendant’s Law Firm” in Scottsdale, as 99% of the law practice is focused on personal law representation in civil or criminal court cases. The law firm charges fees within the top 5% in the county for personal representation. The years of practice have proven to be winning ones for Diamond & Johnson Defense, as over 69% of their clients have been released without any prison time. The team at D & J Defense are known to be highly-skilled at investigations and trial preparation, with several team members who will take on a single case to thoroughly cover every possible defense for each client.

Legacy Law Associates

Legacy Law Associates is well-known as a “compassionate” team of attorneys, specializing in family wills and trusts. With a team of dedicated and experienced attorneys, the firm aims to provide comprehensive legal services that meet the goals of each client or family who need legal services during a difficult season of life. Legacy Law Associates consists of a partnership of two attorneys, Jonathan Dunlap and David Sessions, who established the law firm in 2005 in Phoenix after graduating from law school together. Together, the co-owners seek families who have legal needs after the death of a family member; such as estate negotiations, final documents and closures, trustee assistance, probate searches, and confidential proceedings per the will of any individual. The law firm has hired a private secretary for each partner and is housed in a small office in downtown Phoenix. The firm has not grown since 2007 and does not choose to make that a pivotal goal for their partnership, relying instead on the on-going legal processes of trusts, wills, probate and other related items.

Construction Defect Law Firm

The Construction Defect Law Firm is owned and operated by Chip Jackson and is located in Green Valley, Arizona. The focus of the law firm is to represent homeowners who have determined a new or nearly-new home contains construction defects. In most cases, the home builder has moved on from the geographic region and, even when contacted repeatedly, is unwilling to rectify the situation by repair or monetary refund.

Chip Jackson is a highly-skilled evaluator and contractor within the construction industry. He is able to determine the viability of most construction issues with merely a cursory examination and has proven over the past ten years to be a worthy adversary in the courtroom. He wins 98% of all cases he brings into the courtroom. Chip’s clients are always homeowners who have been victims of construction defects in homes that are typically new or less than ten years old. His skill set includes negotiation outside the courtroom, compelling videos of problematic construction processes, drone footage of damaged rooftops, chimneys and other areas not typically viewed by homeowners and other support graphics that demonstrate the defects of the property.

Competitive Advantage

Harris & Harris Law Firm will be able to offer the following advantages over their competition:

Marketing Plan

Brand & value proposition.

Harris & Harris Law Firm will offer the unique value proposition to its clientele:

Promotions Strategy

The promotions strategy for Harris & Harris Law Firm is as follows:

Word of Mouth/Referrals

Harris & Harris Law Firm has built up an extensive list of contacts over the years by providing exceptional service and expertise to former clients and associates. This group will follow Roger and Anthony to their new company and help spread the word of Harris & Harris Law Firm.

Professional Associations and Networking

Harris & Harris Law Firm will take an active role in all community organizations and networking events, where they can spread the word about the launch and start of their company. The law firm will offer an Open House specifically for association members to acquaint the city of Scottsdale with their new services and location.

Website/SEO Marketing

Harris & Harris Law Firm will fully utilize their website. The website will be well organized, informative, and list all the services that Harris & Harris Law Firm provides. The website will also list their contact information and list their available reservation times to meet with one of the attorney’s for an initial consultation. The website will employ SEO marketing tactics so that anytime someone types in the Google or Bing search engine “law firm services” or “lawyer near me”, Harris & Harris Law Firm will be listed at the top of the search results.

The pricing of Harris & Harris Law Firm will be moderate and on par with competitors so customers feel they receive excellent value when purchasing their services.

Operations Plan

The following will be the operations plan for Harris & Harris Law Firm. Operation Functions:

  • Roger Harris will be the Owner and President of the company. He will engage and manage new client relations.
  • Anthony Harris will be the Legal Outcomes & Research Manager for the company. He will work with clients to craft potential outcomes based on algorithms and research.
  • Richard Cummings will take on the role of Managing Partner and, as such, will oversee junior partners and staff, as the total number of staff lawyers is expected to markedly grow in the coming five years.
  • Torey Crouch will take on the role of Research & Records Manager, where she will support and provide research for all junior and senior attorney staff members. She will also oversee the office personnel.


Harris & Harris Law Firm will have the following milestones completed in the next six months.

  • 5/1/202X – Finalize contract to lease office space
  • 5/15/202X – Finalize personnel and staff employment contracts for the Harris & Harris Law Firm
  • 6/1/202X – Finalize contracts for Harris & Harris Law Firm clients
  • 6/15/202X – Begin networking at association meetings and industry events
  • 6/22/202X – Begin moving into Harris & Harris Law Firm office
  • 7/1/202X – Harris & Harris Law Firm opens its office for business

Financial Plan

Key revenue & costs.

The revenue drivers for Harris & Harris Law Firm are the fees they will charge to clients for the legal services and representation they provide.

The cost drivers will be the overhead costs required in order to staff Harris & Harris Law Firm. The expenses will be the payroll cost, rent, utilities, office supplies, and marketing materials.

Funding Requirements and Use of Funds

Harris & Harris Law Firm is seeking $200,000 in debt financing to launch its law firm. The funding will be dedicated toward securing the office space and purchasing office equipment and supplies. Funding will also be dedicated toward three months of overhead costs to include payroll of the staff, rent, and marketing costs for the print ads and association memberships. The breakout of the funding is below:

Key Assumptions

The following outlines the key assumptions required in order to achieve the revenue and cost numbers in the financials and in order to pay off the startup business loan.

  • Number of Clients Per Month: 125
  • Average Revenue per Month: $325,000
  • Office Lease per Year: $100,000

Financial Projections

Income statement, balance sheet, cash flow statement, law firm business plan faqs, what is a law firm business plan.

A law firm business plan is a plan to start and/or grow your law firm business. Among other things, it outlines your business concept, identifies your target customers, presents your marketing plan and details your financial projections.

You can easily complete your Law Firm business plan using our Law Firm Business Plan Template here .

What are the Main Types of Law Firm Businesses? 

There are a number of different kinds of law firm businesses , some examples include: Commercial Law, Criminal, Civil Negligence, and Personal Injury Law, Real Estate Law, and Labor Law.

How Do You Get Funding for Your Law Firm Business Plan?

Law Firm businesses are often funded through small business loans. Personal savings, credit card financing and angel investors are also popular forms of funding.

What are the Steps To Start a Law Firm Business?

Starting a law firm business can be an exciting endeavor. Having a clear roadmap of the steps to start a business will help you stay focused on your goals and get started faster.

1. Develop A Law Firm Business Plan - The first step in starting a business is to create a detailed law firm business plan that outlines all aspects of the venture. This should include potential market size and target customers, the services or products you will offer, pricing strategies and a detailed financial forecast. 

2. Choose Your Legal Structure - It's important to select an appropriate legal entity for your law firm business. This could be a limited liability company (LLC), corporation, partnership, or sole proprietorship. Each type has its own benefits and drawbacks so it’s important to do research and choose wisely so that your law firm business is in compliance with local laws.

3. Register Your Law Firm Business - Once you have chosen a legal structure, the next step is to register your law firm business with the government or state where you’re operating from. This includes obtaining licenses and permits as required by federal, state, and local laws.

4. Identify Financing Options - It’s likely that you’ll need some capital to start your law firm business, so take some time to identify what financing options are available such as bank loans, investor funding, grants, or crowdfunding platforms.

5. Choose a Location - Whether you plan on operating out of a physical location or not, you should always have an idea of where you’ll be based should it become necessary in the future as well as what kind of space would be suitable for your operations.

6. Hire Employees - There are several ways to find qualified employees including job boards like LinkedIn or Indeed as well as hiring agencies if needed – depending on what type of employees you need it might also be more effective to reach out directly through networking events.

7. Acquire Necessary Law Firm Equipment & Supplies - In order to start your law firm business, you'll need to purchase all of the necessary equipment and supplies to run a successful operation.

8. Market & Promote Your Business - Once you have all the necessary pieces in place, it’s time to start promoting and marketing your law firm business. This includes creating a website, utilizing social media platforms like Facebook or Twitter, and having an effective Search Engine Optimization (SEO) strategy. You should also consider traditional marketing techniques such as radio or print advertising. 

Learn more about how to start a successful law firm business:

  • How to Start a Law Firm


How to Write a Business Plan for Your Law Firm

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Starting a law firm can be overwhelming – where do you start and how do you know you’re making the right decisions for your business? A business plan can help to guide you as you get your firm up and running and even as it continues to grow. So what goes into a business plan and how do you write one?

Below, we’ll walk you through each step of writing your business plan so you can get your firm on the path to success.

Table of Contents

What Is a Business Plan?

Before we dive into the details of how to write your business plan, let’s talk about what a business plan is. A business plan details exactly what you want to achieve with your firm and how you’ll meet those goals. It should include why you chose to start your firm, what your major goals are, your budget, how you’ll gain clients, and so on.

Why Is It Important?

Although it may seem tedious, taking the time to write out a business plan is a critical step in establishing your firm. It will be your roadmap as you grow your business, helping you stay on track and achieve what you want with your firm. Instead of making decisions on the fly based on gut feelings, you’ll be making educated decisions based on your plan.

It’s important to note that your business plan may not stay exactly the same. As you’re writing it, you may find that certain approaches you had planned to use won’t work. And as your business continues to grow and change, you may find that you need to rewrite certain parts of your business plan.

Draft Your Executive Summary

The first piece of the business plan for your law firm is an executive summary. This summary should be one page long and should give a high-level overview of all the key points of your business plan. Ironically, it may be easiest to draft your executive summary at the end of the business plan writing process.

There are a few key components you should include in your executive summary.

Primary Goals

Take a look at the overall goals you want to achieve with your firm. What does success look like for you, and what kind of impact do you want to make with your business? Why are you launching this firm in the first place, and where do you want it to be in five years?

Examples of goals for your firm can include: “Close twenty-five cases a year,” “Grow to a firm of eight to ten lawyers,” or “Gain a reputation as a top law firm in the area.” Remember, focusing on SMART goals can be helpful during this stage. 

Mission Statement

It’s also important to write a mission statement for your law firm. This statement should be two to three sentences long and should succinctly state your firm’s reason for opening and what it’s trying to accomplish. This may include the sort of service you want to provide for your clients, as well as the impact you want to have on your community.

A sample mission statement may be:

John Smith & Associates fights for the people, working to help accident victims get full and fair compensation for their injuries. Our lawyers are tireless as we gather evidence to support the client’s story and negotiate with insurance companies, and we fight for every single case like it was our own.

Your mission statement will later be published on your website, so make sure it’s written from a client-focused perspective.

Core Values

You’ll need to take some time during your business planning process to write down the core values that you’ll use to guide your company. These are what your employees will think about when interacting with customers and what you’ll refer back to when making decisions. Your core values should reflect both your beliefs as an employer and the goals you laid out for your firm.

An example of core values might include, 

We go above and beyond for our clients, focusing on how this injury impacts their life and doing everything in our power to get them the compensation they deserve. We are always looking for opportunities to improve, and we will never settle for ‘close enough.’ We will stay on the cutting edge of the field, always striving to provide the best, easiest process for our clients.

Unique Selling Proposition

The final piece of your executive summary is your unique selling proposition. There are about 135,000 personal injury lawyers in the United States. Why should your clients choose you over all the other lawyers in your area?

Your unique selling proposition may include the years of experience your team has, any awards you’ve won, and how much you’ve recovered for previous clients. If anyone on your team has experience working on the other side of the industry (e.g., defending insurance companies) that unique perspective can also be a selling point. Overall, this proposition should answer the question, “Why should I hire you to handle my case?”

Write a Firm Description

Your firm description will begin to dive into more detail about how your business will operate and what sort of services you’ll offer.

Location and Areas Served

It’s a good idea to start by discussing where you’ll locate your firm and what areas you’ll serve. Depending on where you live and the number of states you’re licensed in, this can be a relatively broad geographic area. It’s important to find a balance between casting a broad enough net to get a good client pool and stretching yourself too thin.

You may want to pick one central location for your firm that will serve as your headquarters and then expand your areas of service to the surrounding neighborhoods. 

Legal Structure and Ownership

You’ll also need to figure out the legal structure of your business and how ownership will work. Will you operate as an LLC, a partnership, or a sole proprietorship? If you plan to operate as an LLC or a partnership, who will be the members/partners at the time of launch?

A sole proprietorship gives you total control of your business, but it does tie your business assets to your personal assets, meaning you can be held personally liable for debts and obligations of the business. A partnership can give unlimited liability to one partner and limited liability (as well as limited control in the business) to all partners. An LLC protects all owners from full liability and also comes with tax advantages.

Client Approach

This is also the moment to decide how you want to approach client service. This will be the face you present to clients, as well as a guiding principle in your legal strategies. As such, your client approach should be connected to your core values, mission statement, and primary goals.

For example, your client approach might be:

We treat every client’s case as we would like our own to be handled. We are tireless in pursuing justice and will advocate fiercely for our clients with insurance agencies and in courtrooms.

Firm History

Even though this is the beginning of your firm’s operation, it’s still a good idea to write down a history of your firm. Starting this document now will give you something to work from as you continue to document your firm’s story. It can also be a good addition to your website.

At the beginning, your firm history will be a little closer to a bio. Talk about your education, including any honors you received during your undergraduate or law school years. You can also dive into any previous legal experience you have, as well as why you decided to start your own law firm.

Conduct Market Analysis

Now that you have a good grasp on how your firm will be structured, it’s time to turn your attention to where it will sit in the market. This research will give you an idea of how to bring in clients and beat out the competition. It will also help to guide your marketing strategy later on in the business plan.

Industry Description

Start your market analysis by writing a description of your local industry. This should include the current size of the legal market your firm is in, as well as its projected growth over the next few years. How many competitors will you be facing, and how many potential clients will you all be competing for?

Your industry description should include the population of the area you plan to serve, as well as the number of lawyers in your particular niche. Information about how many cases are likely to appear in your area may also be helpful. For instance, if you’re a personal injury lawyer, knowing the number of car accidents that happen each year in your area, as well as how many of those cause severe injuries, can be helpful.

Target Audience

Once you have a better picture of your overall industry, it’s time to start identifying your target audience. You may want to write a target customer profile as part of this process. The more specific you can get with this description, the easier it will be to fine-tune your marketing messaging.

Your target customer description should include your ideal client’s gender, age range, economic status, and circumstances that led them to need a lawyer. You may also include their level of education, the type of job they might hold, whether they have families, and so on. 

Demographic Motivation

With your target customer description nailed down, you’ll want to start delving a little deeper into their motivations. What do they look for in a lawyer, and why do they choose one firm over another? What is their primary goal in pursuing their case, and what will they view as a successful result?

When you understand this motivation, you’ll be able to target your marketing to answer those desires. You can also decide which clients will be a good fit for your firm. When you know what demographic motivation you want to look for in a client, you can refer those who have different motivations to another firm that may be a better fit for them.

Competitive Analysis

At this point in your business plan, you’ll want to take a closer look at your competition. During the industry description section, you should have tallied up roughly how many lawyers in your niche are practicing in your area. Now you’ll need to spend some time digging into the top two or three who will be your primary competition.

Determine which firms provide the same services you do, hold the largest market share in your area, or are located near your offices. Once you have your shortlist of competitors, start doing your research into them, examining how they approach their marketing and branding and what sort of unique value proposition they offer their clients. From there, you can decide how you’ll set yourself apart from them and earn clients’ trust.

Expected Costs

You’ve got your industry, audience, and competition figured out, so now it’s time to turn your attention to finances. You’ll need to know how much to expect to spend per case. This number can vary by market, so it’s a good idea to research expected costs in your area.

Your expected cost calculations should include the expenses you’ll accrue in acquiring the case, as well as the average fees that will go into closing the case. This will help you decide how you need to set up your fee structure when you get to the financial plan stage of your business plan.

Set Up Your Organization and Management Overview

At this stage, it will be time to turn your attention to how your organization will be set up and managed. 

Partners and Staff

The first thing you’ll need to decide is how many partners you’ll have and how many staff you need. Remember, as your firm grows, this number can change. And depending on the size of your firm when you’re just starting out, you may have only yourself as a partner and no staff.

If you do have more than one person in your firm, decide who will be partners and who will be associate attorneys. From there, you can start figuring out how many people you’ll need on staff to support your attorneys – paralegals, intake specialists, administrative assistants, and so on.

Educational Background

At this stage, you’ll also want to start writing bios for all your attorneys. This content will be useful to include on your website, as well as on attorney review websites. You can start by writing up some information about everyone’s educational background.

Begin by discussing your undergraduate education, including what you majored in and any significant accomplishments you earned during that time. Then move on to your law school education. Be sure to include any awards you earned, academic groups you belonged to, and any accolades you received.

After you finish the education section of your bios, it will be time to start outlining your experience. This can start with any clerkships you completed during or after law school. You should also include any internships you participated in, as well as any previous legal jobs you’ve held.

It may sound counterintuitive, but if you have experience working on the opposing side of your field, you may want to highlight that in your bio. For instance, you may be a personal injury lawyer who previously worked in insurance defense or a criminal defense attorney who was previously a prosecutor. Having this experience can give you a unique insight into the tactics your opponents will likely use in court and can be a draw for potential clients.

Qualifications for Leadership

Finally, you’ll want to round off your attorney profiles by discussing the particular qualifications for leadership each partner has. Why are they in charge of the firm, and what particular strengths do they bring to the organization? Do they have previous leadership experience, and what is their management style?

Determine Which Specific Services You’ll Offer

With your organizational chart complete, you’ll need to start determining which specific services you’ll offer.

Problems You Plan to Address

Rather than just listing off services willy-nilly, it’s best to start this section by discussing the problems you want to address with your firm. If you’re a criminal defense lawyer, maybe you want to help people avoid unjust prison sentences. If you’re a personal injury lawyer, you might want to stand up against the insurance companies cheating injury victims out of their rights.

Lay out the problems you want to fix in your community and why. Dig into which injustices rankle the most for you and what you would like to see happen in these cases. Consider which specific pain points your potential clients experience and discuss how you’ll address those issues.

Solutions You’ll Provide

Once you know what problems you want to fix, you can start brainstorming about what solutions you’d like to provide. Make sure to delve into how your solutions will better resolve your clients’ needs and address their pain points. Refer back to the list of problems you just made as you’re deciding what solutions you want to tackle.

It’s also a good idea to discuss the benefits your services will provide to your clients and why they would choose you over another firm. What makes your services unique, and is there a particular niche you plan to focus on?

Overview of Your Competition

The conversation of which service to offer will naturally include discussion of the services your competitors offer. You’ll need to see what services you’ll be competing against, as well as any gaps they may have in their service offerings. If no one else in your area is currently handling a certain type of case, you’ll have a unique opportunity to corner the market.

You should also look for any pain points clients may be experiencing with these specific competitors. Do they have reviews that complain about poor customer service or a misrepresentation of costs? These are opportunities for you to get an edge on your competitors and provide a better experience for clients.

Unoffered Services

At this stage, you will also need to decide which services you don’t want to offer. This may include an entire class of cases or simply cases that don’t meet certain thresholds. Choosing not to offer these services doesn’t mean you’re limiting your business; it just means that you’re focusing on the cases that will bring the best value to your firm.

Establish Your Marketing Strategy

By now, you should be starting to get a good handle on your firm and how it will work. So it’s time to turn your attention to your marketing strategy.


Start by taking a look at your unique selling proposition that you drafted and using it to decide what positioning you’ll use for your marketing. Your positioning is the starting point for your marketing and the way you’ll portray your firm to potential clients. This will be connected to your unique selling proposition, your mission statement, your core values, your target client, and your client approach.

Will you position yourself as a reliable, trustworthy legal service provider who will approach each case with compassion and care? Or will you take the stance of a fierce advocate who will be tough on the opposition and go to the mat fighting for your client? The ads you run will be very different depending on what tone you decide to go with.

Promotion Channels

You’ll also need to spend some time thinking about what promotion channels you want to use to market your firm. There are plenty of options, from traditional advertising like television and radio to social media to more creative marketing outlets. You may want to run billboards, bus ads, or even truck ads with companies like InMotion .

Traditional promotion channels can be a great way to reach a broader audience, but they are more expensive. Social media is much more affordable, but you may see a somewhat lower conversion rate. And the more creative outlets may be a little rarer to find, but they can help to reach all new segments of your target market.

Of course, you’ll need to settle on a budget for your marketing efforts. This will impact every part of your marketing strategy, including which channels you use. It will also depend heavily on both your firm size and your location; if you’re in a major city, your marketing budget will need to be a lot bigger than if you’re in a more rural area.

As part of your budget, you need to plan to take a marketing “tax” out of every dollar of revenue you make. A percentage of all these profits should get funneled right back into your marketing. This will help your business to keep growing and will keep your marketing budget on track with that growth.

Before you launch your marketing strategy, you need to decide which key performance indicators you’ll be using to measure your success. You’ll use these as time goes on to tweak your marketing strategy and make sure it’s working well for you. You may need to adjust the channels you’re marketing through, shift your budget, change your messaging, and so on.

There are dozens of KPIs you can track, depending on your particular goals and which marketing channels you’re using. You may want to track your email open rate, your social media engagement rate, your ROI on marketing, your total cost of acquisition per client, and so on. 

Create a Financial Plan

The final step in writing your business plan will be to create your financial plan. This will lay out where all the money in your firm will come from, where it will go, and what the end result will be.

Starting Capital

You may have heard the phrase “You have to spend money to make money,” and that applies to starting a law firm. You need to have some starting capital to get your firm off the ground, and laying out where these funds will come from is an important part of your business plan. 

Start by making a list of financial resources you’ll be drawing on to launch your business. This may include personal savings accounts, loans from family or friends, investments from financial benefactors, or bank loans. Estimate how much money you’ll be able to pull from each source other than loans and then determine how much you’ll need to borrow to get your firm going.

Monthly Operating Costs

Next, you’ll need to estimate how much it will cost you to keep your firm running each month. This will be the starting point to determine how much revenue you’ll need to bring in in order to keep growing and turn a profit.

Your monthly operating costs may include office space rent or mortgage, utilities, insurance, software costs, salaries, and tech maintenance. You may also need to factor in any CLE costs, marketing expenses, branding costs, web design and maintenance, and more. Get as detailed as you can with this section – little details like office supplies or cleaning fees can add up in a hurry.

Number of Cases You Need to Close

Once you have a full estimate of your monthly operating costs, you can start figuring out how many cases you’ll need to close per year to keep up with your costs. Part of this calculation will include estimating how much revenue you’ll earn from each case. You also need to consider how many cases you’ll be able to reasonably handle with the staff size you currently have.

Try to be both specific and realistic in this section. Estimating your revenue will help you ensure that you’re bringing in enough money to stay afloat. Make sure each lawyer in your firm has a large enough caseload to keep them consistently busy without overwhelming them and base your case closure number on that.

Projected Profit and Loss

The final step in writing your financial plan (at least the first draft) will be drawing up a projected profit and loss statement . Your profits will include the net revenue from all the cases you close (your revenue minus any costs you accrued to acquire and close the case). Your losses will include all the operating expenses you listed out earlier. 

Your profit and loss statement can help you figure out how to optimize your firm’s spending. Look for any losses you can cut without compromising the client experience or your firm’s effectiveness. And make sure you’re getting the maximum reasonable profit from your staff and attorneys. 

It’s important to note that this first financial plan you write is far from the last version you’ll write. Your financial plan will need to change as your firm grows and as you get more grounded ideas of what these details look like. Using this framework and updating your financial plan on a regular basis can help you keep your firm on track for success.

Additional Resources

Writing a business plan can help you figure out not only who your firm is and what you want to accomplish with it, but also how it will operate day-to-day. Start by outlining your firm’s goals and describing who you plan to serve. Then conduct some market analysis, set up your organizational structure, decide on what services you’ll offer, establish your marketing strategy, and create a financial plan.

If you’d like to find more resources to grow your firm the smart way, check out the rest of our resource pages. We cover everything from how to manage SEO to PPC advertising and more. And if you’d like to start getting honesty, transparency, and results from your marketing firm, reach out to us at LawRank!

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business plan lawyer partner

Kim Mallett is a director in Major, Lindsey & Africa's partner practice group. Based in New York City, she helps partners and partner groups navigate the lateral market and finds them new opportunities in global, national, regional and local law firms. She can be reached at [email protected].

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Business Plans for Lateral Partners – Good vs. Great

Dan Binstock

Most effective business plans, if not done correctly, are relatively useless.  Why?  Because many partners end up borrowing a template from a friend at another firm, and they just fill in the sections. 

There is not that much thought about why certain information is included, and how it fits with the LPQ and the overall business case for joining the new firm.  Effective business plans often read like a rehash of a partner’s website biography and contain duplicative information that will be included in other documents as part of the due diligence process. 

But effective business plans don’t have to be superfluous, and here are recommendations. 

There are three main questions partners have regarding effective business plans:

  • “Should I have a effective business plan?”
  • “If so, when should it be presented to the firm?”
  • “What should the business plan include?”

Main Purpose of Business Plan  

Before I answer the above three questions about effective business plans and it’s important to explain that the purpose of a effective business plan is to show your future vision for your practice at a particular firm. 

Effective Business plans are used in conjunction with a Lateral Partner Questionnaire (LPQ), which is a detailed questionnaire that focuses on various aspects of your practice and includes questions about the historical, current, and projected financial aspects and economics of your practice.  Taken together, these provide firms with the most comprehensive 360 degree view of your practice and how it will potentially fit in to the new firm.  

In short :  The LPQ looks at your past and present practice, and also encompasses projections for the future.  Business plans supplement the LPQ by putting more “meat on the bones” about your current practice, where you want to go, and how you plan to get there.  The business plan is also, at times, a stand-alone document that can be used at the new firm to present to the executive/hiring committee to explain why you should be hired.  

Now let’s address each of the above three questions.

  • “Should I have a business plan?” Answer: it depends.

If you have an immediately portable practice that is at least self-sustaining (meaning you can keep yourself busy with your own work), or the new firm has enough work to keep you busy based on your unique skillset, a business plan may not be needed.   The information that you include in the LPQ will likely be sufficient.

If it’s unclear as to whether you may have enough business to keep yourself busy, a business plan is important to help explain your vision and plan for your practice.   It’s a piece of the puzzle that helps the new firm answer, “What’s the likelihood this partner will be successful at our firm?” 

  • “When should it be presented to a firm?”

Do not present a business plan before you are interviewing (the exception is if you are coming from the government). 

The business plan must be tailored to each specific firm you are considering, and you will learn important information during the interview process that you will use to help build your case as to why you and your practice is a good fit for the new firm. A big mistake is presenting a generic business plan.  I remember attending a seminar a few years ago on lateral partner business plans, and the speakers (hiring partners at law firms) basically said, “We don’t like generic business plans and think they are sort of useless.  If we actually want a business plan, it should be focused on our firm specifically.” 

Your business plan ideally connects these dots: (1) what the firm wants to accomplish, (2) what you want to accomplish, and (3) how coming together could help you both accomplish these mutual goals.  You are (obviously) unable to connect the dots if you have a generic business plan that is presented at the outset.  As a result, presenting it after a round or two of discussions will enable you to connect the dots much better. 

  • “What information should it contain?”

The level of detail included in your business plan will depend upon your particular circumstances, where you are in the process, and what you wish to highlight.  Below are the most relevant sections that can be presented.   Think of this as a general lateral partner business plan template, which should be modified and tailored based on your specific situation. 


  • Practice Description . Briefly describe nature of your practice, including areas of expertise or specialization; ideal to provide breakdowns (e.g., example 30% M&A, 25% private equity, etc.).
  • Practice Development to Date : What you have done to develop your practice to date.  Although the LPQ will cover your business development track record, it doesn’t hurt to reiterate your main clients, origination track record over the past few years, and your billing rate. 
  • Highlights/Accomplishments : Any highlights about your practice (e.g., particular high-profile deals or cases) and/or industry recognition.
  • Firm Citizenship: Leadership roles, etc.
  • Key Strengths : What are your unique strengths as a partner?  Where do you see yourself adding the most value to a new firm/practice? 
  • Future Goals : Where you want your practice to be in the next 3-5 years.  For example, do you want to expand your practice area or enhance a particular industry focus?  Are there additional clients you want to pursue, but you are limited at your current firm due to conflicts, rates, or geography?
  • Industry Trends : What industries do you focus on? What is happening in your particular industries that could create more opportunity at the new firm?  What are the untapped opportunities and how are you positioned to capitalize on them? 
  • Limitations or Challenges with Current Firm (this is optional, depending on the particular circumstances of your situation) : Why are your future goals difficult to accomplish at your current firm?   Note: the challenges can also be “softer” factors such as the manner in which client credit is shared is not consistent with the type of culture in which you enjoy practicing, etc.  Be careful, however, not to come across as venting your frustrations.  The more this is focused on business and limitations to your practice, the better.
  • Your understanding of the new firm’s goals/strategic needs as it pertains to your practice (based on your discussions).
  • How your background/experience could fit into the firm’s goals/strategic needs.
  • How the new firm could help you (1) more easily accomplish your goals and/or (2) reduce some of the challenges with your current firm. In short, how could both sides come together in a way that meets everyone’s needs.
  • Your Network of Contacts : Include a list or chart of people you would plan to continue receiving business from, and who would you expect to approach to develop new business.  The ideal format for the headers is the name, company, title, and the nature of your relationship, including how long your have represented the client (if they are a current client).  This can include the new firm’s clients to the extent it has been discussed already.  If you do mention the new firm’s clients, be sure to take a collaborative tone that includes pitching together as a group and not as a lone wolf. Note :  Some partners are understandably reluctant to “share their rolodex” too early in the process.  If you are uncomfortable, it’s ok to hold off on providing too much detail regarding your network if it’s still early in the process and you are unsure if the firm is a fit.  If the firm presses you for information on your network and future prospects, you can equalize the process by asking the firm to share information on their main clients/contacts as well, so it’s more of a “mutual brainstorming.” 
  • Specific Business Development/External-Facing Activities : Many business plans have generic sections such as “Writing:  I plan to write articles” or “Speaking:  I plan to speak at industry conferences to help get my and the firm’s name out there.”  There is nothing wrong with this, but it often comes across as very generic.  To make more of an impact, provide specific examples of what you have done to date, and what you plan to continue doing.  For example, are you on the Board of any high-profile publications or do you often participate at certain industry conferences?

The business plan is not a one-size-fits all approach, but the above provides more clarity on the key issues these documents involve and how to best approach this part of the lateral hiring process. 

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Author: Dan Binstock

Dan co-owns Garrison & Sisson, where he focuses on lateral partner and practice group placements. He has consistently been recognized as one of the Top 100 Global Legal Strategists and Consultants by LawDragon, and authored "The Attorney's Guide to Using (or Not Using) Legal Recruiters." Dan is the Immediate Past President of the National Association of Legal Search Consultants (NALSC), where he also served as Chair of the Ethics Committee. Visit here to learn more about Dan, or contact him confidentially with any questions at (202) 559-0492 or [email protected].

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How to Write A Lateral Partner Business Plan [TEMPLATE]

by Jennifer | Jun 21, 2022 | Business Plan , Lateral Partner Moves

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The Lateral Partner Business Plan is an essential tool when pursuing a partnership-level lateral move. Your perfect-fit law firm is out there. What distinguishes Gillman Strategic Group is our focus on our candidates and the career that you want. We work with you to assess your Business Plan and ensure that you are positioned to get the right results for you.   Rather than repurposing another Business Plan or a generic template we ask you to put this together because it makes you more valuable, more aware, and more prepared for a lateral move.  A thoughtful, well-crafted plan is a valuable tool. It educates the law firm about your expertise and background, gives you increased leverage when negotiating your wants and needs, and gives your partner a roadmap on how you will continue to be successful and benefit the firm.

Plus, it’s an excellent opportunity to market yourself and your practice.

This article will explore three components of an effective lateral law partner business plan. By including them in yours, you’ll be setting yourself up for a successful and smooth lateral placement process at a law firm where you will be happy.  Download our sample lateral business plan template, get started on your future today. 

Lateral Partner Business Plan

Download the Lateral Partner Business Plan

(This post focuses mostly on Partner Business Plans, but the same template and approach can also be useful as an associate attorney business development plan.)

#1: Lateral Partner Business Plan Executive Summary

Think of this section as your bio or resume. This is your chance to hook the reader with an outline of your practice, experience, and industry niches or areas of specialized expertise.

Be sure to highlight any noteworthy accomplishments, like winning a high-value or high-profile case, and don’t forget to emphasize your key strengths. 

You can also include general information such as:

  • Job title and job functions
  • Leadership roles within and outside the law firm
  • Relevant work history
  • Community and charity involvement
  • Your expectations for your practice in the future

Last but not least, when it comes to your summary, keep it brief. This is just an overview, so aim for 100-200 words. Remember that busy partners will be reading it – so keep this short. 

Our Business Plan Template guides you through putting your Lateral Partner Business Plan together. Download it here.  

#2: Current Business

In this section, dive deeper into your current book of business. The level of detail and specificity you employ can vary depending on your comfort level — some attorneys are willing to divulge all client information, while others are not.

Regardless, the goal is to show that you have a portable business portfolio that you are highly likely to retain at a new law firm. One of the primary motivating factors for law firms to bring in a lateral partner is revenue generation, so be sure to include realistic projections for your practice.

T his can be a bit of a tricky balancing act, as you don’t want to under or over-project. If you expect your revenue in a given category to increase or decrease from historic levels, be sure to explain why.

Your revenue projections will be of intense interest to the firm, so make sure you provide as much detail as possible and that your forecasts are credible. 

Your current business section should include the following information:

  • Existing clients with the type of work, past and projected revenue, and cross-selling opportunities
  • Origination information; in other words, identify how each client came to you, such as through a referral or marketing activity
  • Client contact information, including all the individual relationships you have at the client’s business (for example, the CEO or General Counsel) as well as how long you have known each contact and the strength of the relationship

Finally, it may also be a good idea in this section to touch on how you have developed your practice to date. The LPQ is likely to cover your business development track record, but it is nevertheless useful to reiterate some of the information here. 

#3: Future Opportunities in the Lateral Partner Business Plan

This may be the most critical section of all — this is where the rubber hits the road. Here, you will connect the dots for the hiring firm by laying out how you will use your new platform to retain and grow business from existing clients and generate business from new clients. Include the following in your Lateral Partner Business Plan: 

  • Define your ideal client, and be specific. Examples may include: multijurisdictional product liability defense for pharmaceutical companies, management-side labor, and employment for middle-market companies, or trusts and estates for wealthy individuals.
  • Define your competitive advantage. Why do your ideal clients hire you? Is it because of your experience, industry knowledge, personal brand, reputation, pricing, or a combination of these?
  • Write about the specific opportunities that a new law firm and its platform will bring to you and the firm. Perhaps you could not get work from a client due to conflicts at your current firm. Or, you have clients that need a national platform or services that your current firm cannot provide.

T he point is to put yourself in the best possible light. However, do not overpromise or create unrealistic expectations. Again, the level of detail and specificity depend on the comfort level of the individual candidate. 

You can also include other opportunities and plans, too. Where would you like to grow your practice geographically? What other specialties within your practice area would you like to explore? In which industries would you like to practice (where you don’t practice now)?

Ask yourself questions like these, and paint a portrait for the reader of what they can expect from you as a member of the firm. Remember, though, not to over or understate your potential. Protect your credibility and reputation by keeping your estimations optimistic but realistic. 

The Lateral Partner Business Plan  Bottom Line

When pursuing a lateral partnership opportunity, it is essential to create an in-depth and comprehensive Business Plan. Doing so is an important part of the lateral partner hiring process (and it will help you complete your Lateral Partner Questionaire .)

Even if you are not thinking of making a move now or at all, a Lateral Partner Business Plan can still be useful. 

If you have an up-to-date Business Plan you can explore other opportunities, if it ever sounds interesting. If you already have a Lateral Partner Business Plan, it can be constructive to review it for areas of improvement. If you don’t already have one, your first step before seeking lateral move opportunities should be to start working on your plan. If you have any questions or need help, let’s schedule a time to talk.

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Law Firm Business Plan Sample

Jun.03, 2018

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Table of Content

Do you want to start a law firm business?

Do you plan to start a law firm business? There is no doubt this is an awesome business venture with amazing potential. In recent years, the law firm industry has been experiencing a steady growth of more than 15% per annum. The need for individuals, businesses and companies seeking for lawyer services in order not to get into legal problems has greatly increased. Today, there are many niches you can choose to start your practice on. All you need to have is the right qualification and target the right customers for your law firm business plan .

Executive Summary

2.1 the business.

The law firm will be registered under the names Raymond Associates, and will be situated in Houston, Texas. The law firm will be owned and managed by Alex Raymond who is a lawyer by profession.

2.2 Management Team

Alex Raymond is a lawyer by professional who has worked in the legal industry for more than fifteen years. Before coming up with a law firm business model, Alex worked for many to law firms across the United States and is an accomplished legal business service expert .

2.3 Customer Focus

Raymond Associates plans to offer different top notch legal services to customers in Houston, Texas. The customer focus will cater for different age groups and working class.

Once you have figured out how to start your own law firm, having an idea of the customer you intend to target is important. The customers you plan to target is essential for the growth of the business.

2.4 Business Target

Raymond Associates intends to offer services to a wide range of clientele keen on seeking legal services for their various needs. For a business to grow, it is important to carry out an in-depth research to target the right clientele.

Company Summary

3.1 company owner.

Alex Raymond is a lawyer professional who has worked with famous legal firms in the United States. In the course of his career, he ascended to the position of a seasoned attorney and took the lead role in planning the law firm operations and overseeing all management related aspects.

3.2 Aim of Starting the Business

After having been in the career long enough, Alex noticed there was a lot of potential in the legal industry in his home town Houston. That is the when he decided to move back to home and start a business plan for law firms . With a good business plan for law firms , Raymond Associates will indeed be one of the best law firms in Houston.

3.3 How the Business will be Started

As an expert in legal services, Alex understands what he needs to start the law firm. To set his idea into action, he has worked closely with businesses set-up experts to develop a financial plan for the law firm.

Services for Customers

Raymond Associates is focused on offering professional legal services to different type of clients. According to the starting a law firm business plan, the business is focused on offering the following services:

  • Provide property law services to people facing mortgage, foreclosure and other property acquisition.
  • Offer legal services to people suffering from personal injury. Employees’ injuries at work are extremely     sensitive and need a qualified lawyer to intervene.
  • Provide legal services to couples going through a divorce.
  • Offer legal services to people buying and selling businesses – acquisitions and mergers.

Marketing Analysis for Law Firm Business

For Raymond Associates to meet its market obligations, a detailed market analysis was done to help the business establish itself in the industry and adequately serve the needs of client. This law firm business plan explains the strategy the business will follow to attain its goals. Given the rising demand for various legal services, there is a great opportunity for Raymond Associates to meet its objectives.

5.1 Market Segmentation

Given the increasing popularity of law firms industry, Raymond Associates understands the value of coming up with sustainable marketing strategies to acquire a larger market share. Being one of the largest cities in the United States, Houston is a business hub with many individuals and companies looking for legal services. Based on the market findings and law firm business plan template, the law firm intends to target the following potential customers.

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5.1.1 Couples

Marriage is a good thing but a time comes in life where people want to depart for various reasons. Nowadays, there is a high divorce rate in Texas, and for this reason Alex so it necessary to start a law office business plan to provide divorce legal services. When going through a divorce, you want to use a law firm that know how to handle sensitive issues. Raymond Associates highly trained attorneys and family law professionals will be dedicated to help people going through divorce to successfully navigate the family courts. If you have a family law case, it can be frustrating to sort through the maze of paperwork required to finish your case. Raymond Associates is ready to help though all the steps if filing a divorce, spousal support orders or custody issues among other services listed in the law firm business plan sample.

5.1.2 Property Owners

One of the main services offered by Raymond Associates is foreclosure and mortgage legal services. Whether it is mortgage, foreclosure or other property acquisition, Raymond Associates lawyers will help you go through that. The lawyers will offer the best advice and assist you throughout the whole process. The law firm will help file necessary documents and go through disputes that may arise between the transactions.

Business plan for investors

5.1.3 employees.

With so many companies and organization in Houston, Raymond Associates sample law firm business plan will target employees. When it comes to legal services involving employee injuries at work, these cases are usually sensitive and need a qualified lawyer to intervene. In most cases, employees feel oppressed in matters in regards to compensation and opt to use a lawyer. This is why Raymond Associates has a well inclusive personal injury law firm business plan to cater for such cases.

5.1.4 Businesses

According to the law firm marketing plan template, Raymond Associates will offer legal services to businesses to buying and selling businesses – acquisitions and mergers. With many individuals buying and selling businesses, it is important to use the services of a lawyer. A good law office will help you minimize taxes and potential liability issues for buyers and sellers figuring out how to structure a deal.

5.2 Business Target

Raymond Associates is getting into a highly competitive environment considering there are a high number of law firms in Houston. However, this small law firm business plan outlines the plan the business intends to use to acquire clients and propel business growth. It is costly to set up a fully functioning law firm, but adequate strategies have been put in place to help the business fully recover its initial capital. After finalizing the starting a law firm business and rolling out operations, the call centerexpects to recoup its initial investment in three years based on a projected 30-40% annual sales growth.

5.3 Product Pricing

While strategizing on how to start a law firm business plan , Alex Raymond together with the assistance of experts has come up with a competitive pricing structure tailored for different services. At the beginning, the call center intends to offer various incentives to attract clients.

When planning to start a law office, you need to come up with a great business development strategy . Alex Raymond has engaged experts to formulate a call center strategy that will be instrumental to steer business growth. He has also invested time to studying law firm proposal examples. The following is Raymond Associates law firm sales strategy.

6.1 Competitive Analysis

Raymond Associates has deployed the latest telemarketing technologies to boost efficiency and seamlessly handle multiple clients without compromising quality. After completing the procedures of how to build a law firm, the business anticipates high competition considering there are numerous similar establishments in Houston.

6.2 Sales Strategy

For Raymond Associates to achieve its intended targets and create a successful law office which is popular with clients, the following sales strategy will be implemented.

  • Hire professional marketing agencies to help advertise the law firm and reach out to potential clients.
  • Organize an official opening party and welcome top industry stakeholders to create awareness about the business
  • Advertise on digital media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram
  • Use local media channels such as Television and newspapers to advertise the business

6.3 Sales Forecast

Raymond Associates law firm has put in place various sales strategies in order to meet its targets. According to the law firm business plan example, the sales forecast looks promising for the business.

Personnel Plan

Raymond Associates provides diverse services in order to boost the company’s income. When coming up with a business plan for law firms , it is vital to focus on having a good personnel team to handle business operations.

7.1 Personnel Plan

The law firm is owned by Alex Raymond who will be the overall firm manager for the business. The law office intends to hire the following staff to enable the business carry out its operations.

  • Administrator
  • Operations Manager
  • Two Marketing Executives
  • Five Lawyers
  • Three Advocates

Successful candidates will undergo intensive training to understand procedures and expectations.

7.2 Average Staff Salaries

Raymond Associates law office plans to pay its staff the following salaries in the first three years of operations.

Financial Plan

Alex Raymond law firm has formulated a financial plan that will steer the path to business success. To the business, Alex will use his personal savings and funds from two investors. A loan will be sought to help raise startup capital for the business. Crucial financial information for the business has been indicated in the law firm business plan template free.

8.1 Important Assumptions

Financial forecast for Raymond Associates law firm will be based on the following assumptions.

8.2 Brake-even Analysis

Raymond Associates Brake-even Analysis is indicated in the graph below.

8.3 Projected Profit and Loss

Profit and Loss information for Raymond Associates calculated on a monthly and annual basis is shown below.

8.3.1 Monthly Profit

8.3.2 yearly profit, 8.3.3 monthly gross margin, 8.3.4 yearly gross margin.

Below is the profit and Loss Analysis for Raymond Associates law firm.

8.4 Projected Cash Flow

The diagram below is a summary of subtotal cash spent, subtotal cash from operations, subtotal cash spent on operations, subtotal cash received and pro forma cash flow.

8.5 Projected Balance Sheet

The following is a Projected Balance Sheet for Raymond Associates law firm that shows capital, assets, long term assets, liabilities and current liabilities.

8.6 Business Ratios

Raymond Associates law firm Business Ratios, Ratio Analysis and Business Net Worth are shown below.

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OGS capital professional writers specialized also in themes such as financial due diligence, technical due diligence , due diligence of the enterprise , due diligence template , etc.

OGSCapital’s team has assisted thousands of entrepreneurs with top-rate business plan development, consultancy and analysis. They’ve helped thousands of SME owners secure more than $1.5 billion in funding, and they can do the same for you.

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The Managing Partner’s Dilemma (And How to Remedy It)

Successfully leading a law firm requires adopting a CEO mindset that is at odds with your lawyer brain . It can also mean sacrificing your own practice for the overall good of the firm. That’s the managing partner’s dilemma.

It’s lonely at the top — an inconvenient reality most managing partners feel but don’t want to admit.

Table of contents

What is the managing partner dilemma, 1. invest in leadership training, 2. develop a ceo mindset, 3. be protective of your calendar and intentional about where you spend your time, 4. become an expert delegator, 5. develop the ability to coalesce partners, 6. scale back rainmaking, 7. have candid conversations with other managing partners and ceos, 8. always be in learning mode, honing leadership and management skills, read more from wendy on law firm leadership and growth.

Being a great lawyer does not automatically equate to possessing the skills and abilities to successfully lead a law firm. In fact, the traits that make for a great attorney often create obstacles to effective leadership.

The best lawyers are driven, focused, champion issue-spotters who protect clients and businesses with a generous aversion to risk. They also face myriad pressures that keep their foot on the cortisol gas pedal and demand a super-human level of attention and effort. Muscle memory dictates that great lawyers channel their energy toward deadlines and client service, with nothing left to invest in management or a higher level of accountability.

So, Captain Cortisol is far from the ideal candidate for being a leader of a law firm, with its requirements of servant leadership, strategic thinking, effective communication, conflict resolving, cat-herding and big-picturing. In fact, the position of managing partner very much goes against the grain of everything good lawyers are taught and encouraged to do. What’s more, managing partners must often wade through the perfect storm of both running the firm and maintaining their practice.

This is why so many partners hesitate to volunteer for the job, and why those who find themselves at the head of the table struggle — usually in silence.

Eight Tips to Resolve the Managing Partner Dilemma

If you are a managing partner and my description hit a nerve, here are eight useful tips.

Law school does not teach these critical skills, and they are rarely learned on the job. Effective leaders possess a strong skill set that allows them to make hard decisions and tolerate the risks associated with their position.

Again, a CEO mindset differs from a lawyer mindset and is rarely learned on the job. The good news is there are qualified professional coaches to guide you. Finding a good one can sometimes be a challenge, however, so proper vetting and finding a personality match are essential.

Balancing administrative duties and lawyering responsibilities must be well-choreographed and tracked. Managing partners who allow themselves to engage in a daily tug-of-war of competing responsibilities will be ineffective and exhausted.

Delegation is a challenge for most lawyers. After all, the work is high stakes and when your name is associated with a matter, you want to be sure it is managed well. Failure to delegate certain lawyering tasks and various administrative responsibilities can be disastrous.

Read: “ Three Steps to Effective Delegation.”

Herding cats is impossible. The only way to avoid this situation is to develop the skills necessary to build consensus and enforce accountability. These can include interpersonal communication skills, empathy, active listening, patience, critical thinking and negotiation (a skill that most lawyers already possess, but need to apply internally).

This is a big one. If the managing partner is also responsible for the lion’s share of origination in the firm, this puts both the MP and the firm at risk. No one has enough time to be an effective MP, top rainmaker and a good lawyer. Too many law firm leaders believe they can do it all, but something always gets sacrificed.

Seek out leaders in similar roles and avail yourself of much-needed support and camaraderie. Lawyers are proprietary by nature, so it may take time and practice before you are comfortable opening up versus reflexively keeping everything close to the vest. Realizing you are not the only one to carry the load, however, is immensely valuable.

The best leaders are learners, yet this feels contradictory to what is generally expected of lawyers — to be in knowing mode. To be an effective leader one must be nimble, curious and humble. To do otherwise is not beneficial to the firm.

Read: “Legal Leadership: Future Proof Your Law Firm .”

Law firms are, in fact, businesses, and must be led as such. It falls to the managing partner (or executive committee) to fulfill their fiduciary duty to their firm by positioning themselves as savvy executives. These executive skills are not automatic and must be carefully honed and strategically applied to run a successful firm.

  • “ The 3 Most Common Conflicts in Law Firms and How to Resolve Them ”
  • “ To Risk or Not to Risk? That Is the Question for Firm Leaders in 2024 ”
  • “Legal Leadership: How to Future-Proof Your Law Firm ”
  • “Finding Your Law Firm’s Next Managing Partner ”
  • “ Are You Dealing With Executive Functioning Disorder? ”

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Wendy Merrill

Wendy Merrill is a fierce advocate for improving the practice of law. She has worked with thousands of lawyers around the world, providing practical guidance and proven techniques designed to help lawyers and their firms thrive. Wendy is both the proud CEO of StrategyHorse , a consulting firm committed to boosting law firm profitability with proven strategies, and co-founder of The Savvy Advocate , a unique associate training program designed to prepare younger lawyers and their firms for success. She is also an author and prominent speaker on law firm growth strategy, winning the war for legal talent, bridging the generational gap in law firms, and more.

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Alston & Bird Adds Partner Scott Schirick to New York Office

By Bloomberg Law Automation

Bloomberg Law Automation

Scott Schirick has joined Alston & Bird’s litigation and trial practice group as a partner in the New York office, the firm said Thursday .

Schirick’s practice concentrates on federal and state litigation, securities enforcement and regulatory investigations, and white-collar criminal defense matters, according to Alston & Bird.

His clients include those in the financial services, securities, real estate, and fintech sectors, said the firm.

This story was produced by Bloomberg Law Automation.

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Lateral Partner Recruiting Must Focus on Honesty and Clear Data

Brian Carrozza

Increasing competition for shrinking profit margins has only escalated the war for talent. Meanwhile, 44% of lateral partners cited a lack of confidence in firm management and strategy, according to a 2023 Major, Lindsey & Africa report .

The report found this lack of confidence to be the biggest reason law firm partners consider leaving their firms. Effective integration of laterals into their new firms was the best predictor of their satisfaction.

Lateral partner recruiting should begin with, and be driven by, plans that assess where the firm is right now, where it wants to go, and how lateral partner hiring is going to help deliver its goals. Hiring plans should align with the firm’s overall strategic plan—as well as plans of key practices—to ensure consensus on types of sought-after candidates to target.

A strategic framework helps stakeholders share why the firm’s culture is different, the firm’s value propositions, and its core principles. It also shares how a particular attorney or practice fits into the firmwide strategy.

Firms should be able to articulate how they allocate resources to support individual and practice growth, enhance client service, and drive revenue. Hiring committees should partner with their firms’ marketing communications and business development teams to share this messaging in a way that builds trust and manages expectations.

Next-Level Recruitment

Firms need to focus on telling compelling stories about how potential lateral partner candidates can help achieve longer-term goals—a firm’s ability to support its partners in a top “pull” factor, the report noted.

It’s important for firms to emphasize their clients, capabilities, and commitment to relevant practice areas, as well as the marketing and business development support for lateral partners. Firms also should show how they foster cross-selling and cross-pollination opportunities.

While it’s important to be enthusiastic, firms shouldn’t overpromise. They should use this early contact as an opportunity to set a tone.

Many firms require lateral partner candidates to complete an extensive questionnaire, or LPQ, which solicits essential information for the due diligence process. The responses tell firms what a prospective candidate hopes to bring and allows the hiring committee to vet those clients, including for potential conflicts of interest.

LPQs are an important part of the process, but they are only one diligence tool. Ultimately, hiring should be driven more by the strategy at the center of the firm’s lateral partner hiring plan rather than by a potential lateral partner’s projected book of business.

It’s important to contextualize LPQ information. Further diligence, probing questions, and verification often can help distinguish between projected potential business and projected portable business, such as clients with a high likelihood of following the lateral partner to the new firm.

Future potential business may include existing clients and whether they’ll follow the lateral partner candidate to the new firm, and prospective clients that the lateral partner candidate will continue to cultivate in hopes of bringing them aboard.

Big Picture

Recruitment processes that used to take four to six months before the Covid-19 pandemic are now taking four to six weeks.

Firms should develop a standardized, efficient recruiting process that respects candidates’ time and sensitivities inherent in meeting with a potential new firm. Many attorneys have spent their entire careers at one firm—this process may be the first time they’re entering the lateral partner market.

Firms should realize that for every lateral partner candidate hired, there often are dozens more who weren’t. Some of those who weren’t hired (or who didn’t move forward in the process of their own volition) could be future clients, prospects, referral sources, or simply a better fit for the firm later. It’s critical that they walk away with a positive impression of the firm.

To gain the best talent, firms will need to adopt a data-driven, deliberate approach to lateral partner hiring while emphasizing transparency throughout the recruiting and hiring process.

This article does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg Industry Group, Inc., the publisher of Bloomberg Law and Bloomberg Tax, or its owners.

Author Information

Brian J. Carrozza is director of client development at Goulston & Storrs.

Courtney C. Hudson is business development manager at Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz.

Megan K. Senese is co-founder and principal at stage, a women-owned business development and legal marketing firm.

Write for Us: Author Guidelines

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Melanie Cohen at [email protected] ; Rebecca Baker at [email protected]

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Ramón Fonseca, partner in firm at center of “Panama Papers” scandal, dies

FILE - Ramon Fonseca speaks during an interview at his office in Panama City, April 7, 2016. Fonseca, a partner in the Mossack Fonseca law firm at the center of the “Panama Papers” scandal over the hiding of wealth in offshore entities, has died, a lawyer from his firm confirmed Thursday, May 9, 2024. He was 71. (AP Photo/Arnulfo Franco, File)

FILE - Ramon Fonseca speaks during an interview at his office in Panama City, April 7, 2016. Fonseca, a partner in the Mossack Fonseca law firm at the center of the “Panama Papers” scandal over the hiding of wealth in offshore entities, has died, a lawyer from his firm confirmed Thursday, May 9, 2024. He was 71. (AP Photo/Arnulfo Franco, File)

  • Copy Link copied

Ramón Fonseca, a partner in the Mossack Fonseca law firm at the center of the “Panama Papers” scandal over the hiding of wealth in offshore entities, has died, a lawyer from his firm confirmed Thursday. He was 71.

Lawyer Guillermina McDonald told The Associated Press in a phone message that Fonseca died late Wednesday. She said he had been hospitalized since two days before last month’s start of a trial centered on his firm. A cause of death was not provided.

Fonseca was not present at the trial, but his partner Jürgen Mossack did attend. Fonseca was among more than two-dozen associates accused of helping some of the world’s richest people hide their wealth. A verdict is still awaited.

The trial came eight years after the leak of 11 million financial documents that became known as the “Panama Papers.” The leak prompted the resignation of the prime minister of Iceland and brought scrutiny to the then-leaders of Argentina and Ukraine, Chinese politicians, and Russian President Vladimir Putin, among others.

Panamanian prosecutors allege that Mossack, Fonseca and their associates created a web of shell companies that used complex transactions to hide money linked to illicit activities in the “car wash” corruption scandal of Brazilian construction giant Odebrecht.

Fonseca and others were charged with money laundering, which they denied.

Fonseca had said the firm, which closed in 2018, had no control over how its clients might use offshore vehicles created for them.

Mossack Fonseca helped create and sell around 240,000 shell companies across four decades in business. It announced its closure in March 2018, two years after the scandal erupted.

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    Business Overview. The Harris & Harris Law Firm is a startup up business that provides legal advice and services for clients located within the Scottsdale, Arizona region. The company is founded by Roger Harris and his son, Anthony. Roger Harris has been a partner in a well-established company, Foundations Law Firm, for over twenty years.

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  30. Ramón Fonseca, partner in firm at center of "Panama Papers" scandal

    FILE - Ramon Fonseca speaks during an interview at his office in Panama City, April 7, 2016. Fonseca, a partner in the Mossack Fonseca law firm at the center of the "Panama Papers" scandal over the hiding of wealth in offshore entities, has died, a lawyer from his firm confirmed Thursday, May 9, 2024. He was 71. (AP Photo/Arnulfo Franco, File)