As of late, being a virtual lawyer is on the rise. Lawyers no longer need to work from traditional brick-and-mortar offices, thanks to changing habits living through the Covid-19 outbreak and rising public acceptance of virtual legal services. They can connect with clients, perform legal work, and more from home offices or even while on holiday in a different country. However, there may be various security and legal concerns a virtual lawyer must address. Here, we share some tips to make your shift to being a virtual lawyer a breeze.
- Ensure compliance with local rules and jurisdiction
Although it has advantages, becoming a virtual lawyer is not always an option, particularly if your country or state has strict regulations and jurisdictions.
Budding virtual lawyers need to be diligent to ensure:
- that there isn’t any unauthorized practice of law,
- they serve clients in regions where they are licensed for practice,
- they are not actively soliciting clients from other jurisdictions,
- compliance with local rules and jurisdiction because sometimes a physical office presence is required, and not all virtual legal services are allowed.
- They can maintain client data confidentiality and security while practicing online with the necessary encryption technology.
- Plan, Strategize and Execute Well
For solo practitioners and law firm owners, a well-designed plan to call one’s own is essential to building the brand online. You can say it takes as much work as launching your new law firm, where you’d need to consider several factors to make it work.
First, get to know the market that you’re entering. Start by asking questions like what do your potential clients want? Who are your competitors? What are your possible challenges?
Knowing the market helps you craft a business strategy that will match your strengths and decide on the legal services you can offer. You can then build your business plan with measurable goals, define your virtual legal practice’s vision and core values, and make a financial plan. After that, it’s about executing your plan and adapting whenever necessary.
- Protect Your Clients’ and Your Data with Cybersecurity
A critical factor to becoming a successful virtual lawyer is due diligence to ensure that your client and law firm information is safe from hackers and cybersecurity attacks.
It would help if you thought about how to engage securely with your clients without being in the same room and where to store their data. Several best practices include:
- Taking an introductory cybersecurity course to understand best practices, such as never using public WiFi and knowing how to create secure internet and video connections.
- Using secure video conferencing platforms such as Microsoft Teams or Dialpad to connect with clients and all legal staff.
- Working on bank-grade security encryption cloud-based legal practice management software like CoreMatter. It will keep all matters and accounting information of your practice in order.
- Craft a Digital Marketing Plan for your Practice
Being a virtual lawyer means having a solid digital presence. There are several ways you can do this:
- Build an SEO-optimized law firm website so new clients can find you, your services, awards, or even thought-leadership articles.
- Have a solid social media presence
- Invest in digital advertising via Facebook, LinkedIn, or PPC marketing.
If you don’t have a digital marketing team, consider hiring a digital marketing company to help you strengthen your digital presence.
- Automate your accounting, billing, and legal practice with CoreMatter
Speed is the most significant factor that will set you as a virtual lawyer apart from traditional brick-and-mortar lawyers. The speed at which you can achieve this depends on whether you are a paper-based or paperless law office.
Paperless law firms and virtual lawyers always use tools like CoreMatter to streamline your day-to-day operations such as document retrieval, partner approval, accounting, and billing, all without having to be at the law office. Not only does this automation save you time and money, but it can also benefit those who work based on flat fees.
If you want to become a virtual lawyer, use CoreMatter, a cloud legal practice management, accounting, and billing software that you can access anywhere and save time and money. CoreMatter has bank-grade security encryption, so you can ensure all your matters are safe. Coupled with due diligence, business strategy, communication, and marketing planning, going virtual can benefit you tremendously.
Although not all firms are allowed to be 100% virtual, knowing these tips and having the right tools will help. You can gain more clients while enjoying lower operating costs and a better work-life balance.
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CoreMatter, the leading cloud-based case management tool in Southeast Asia, frees your firm from the mess of the mundane to focus on what matters most.