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MANAGING THE OFFICE

Ask the Expert: How to name documents in a document management system

Q: “I’m looking for a naming protocol guideline—a compilation of legal and non-legal abbreviations and acronyms for naming documents in our…


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BILLING & COLLECTIONS

Notice to Client of Increase in Hourly Rate

Why you need this Model Notice to Client:

Clients should be notified in writing of any fee increases 30 days in advance. This
protects both the firm and the client. Informing your client of what to expect and
when to expect it will help your client prepare for the extra expense.


. . . download here

Model Billing Statement

Why you need this Model Billing Statement:

Many clients don’t like to pay their legal bills and without having measures in place to ensure payments, law firms can run into huge headaches. One best practice is to ensure that your billing statement clearly outlines what services your clients are receiving for their money.


. . . download here

BILLING & COLLECTIONS

Model Retainer Agreement

Why you need this Model Retainer Agreement:

Many clients don’t like to pay their legal bills and without having measures in place to ensure payments, law firms can run into huge headaches. One best practice is to lay out your billing arrangements and hourly fees charged by partners, associates, and paralegals in your retainer agreement.


. . . download here

CREATING A BUDGET

How to create a budget for your law firm

While many attorneys cringe at the thought of creating a budget, there are five important reasons why your law firm needs one, says…


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BUDGET

Sample Budget Spreadsheet

Why you need this budget spreadsheet:

While many attorneys cringe at the thought of creating a budget, there are several important reasons why your law firm needs one, including helping you prepare for unexpected expenses.


. . . download here

CONFLICT CHECKING

Nine traps to avoid when checking for conflicts

Before a law firm accepts any new file, it must first ensure that no conflict of interest exists. Yet, despite having stringent conflict-checking procedures…


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FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT

A guide to understanding financial data

Law practice owners, especially those operating smaller firms, tend not to be super-knowledgeable about…


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RECORDKEEPING

Use weekly financial reporting to keep partners aware of cash flow

A Vermont manager has found that running the financial reports weekly instead of monthly is an easy way for the partners to stay always aware and in control of what’s…


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RISK MANAGEMENT

4 bad financial habits that may increase your policy premiums and your malpractice risk

Ineffective billing and collections practices affect more than the bottom line. They ultimately may determine what the firm has to…


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