Law Practice Management-- How To Identify Your Costs



Identifying fees is a hard law practice management job for many lawyers when believing through their law firm marketing plans. In figuring out fees for specific services, attorneys often fall short of what they need to charge. Too many attorneys hesitate of even charging the competitive rate for their services when making their law office marketing strategies. Even more, they make the pricing decisions typically with no information or conceptual framework. In addition, instead of focusing their efforts on how they can justify getting leading dollar for what they offer, they charge a fee that is typically way too low and often really can frighten potential customers who believe there is something missing out on from a service that is "cheap". Furthermore lots of lawyers do not understand that the majority of buyers in the market by far are "value buyers" and not searching for " low-cost".

Before you sit down and start believing through your law practice management prices method you need some distinctions around rates commonly utilized in law company marketing preparation. Do understand a law practice management law firm marketing plan is not efficient if you only draw in individuals who want to pay the least expensive cost for a service. Rather, you desire to focus your law practice management and law company marketing strategies on drawing in clients who will end up being long term assets to the firm.

There are basically four methods of identifying how much you need to be charging for your services. Lets move right into those now.

The Marketplace Method In Law Practice Management Prices

This is one great way of identifying prices. Get your assistant to support you in this law practice management job and invest a long time discovering what the series of rates is in the community. Have her do a " secret consumer" research study by calling around as if he/she were a potential client and discover out what your competitors state on the phone to her around rates. She might require to call from her house phone to prevent caller ID. As another choice you could have him/her call other assistants or paralegals at your competitors and provide to exchange your charges for their charges or you might do that with other legal representatives yourself in your market. If you truly wish to get into it and have optimal information you can compose maybe a couple of dozen rivals in your marketplace and say you are doing a charge study and if they would send you their fee list you will produce a composite list that does not determine those reacting and send them a copy of the results. To keep it simple for them include a stamped, self-addressed envelope with a list of the most common services offered in your practice location. Now you will see what people are charging for services similar to those you provide. You need to have the ability to come up with a series of prices. Utilize this variety to set prices for your own services. My suggestion in law firm marketing preparation is to charge at the 75% level of the list. You should be at or in the top 25% of the charges.

Remember that in basic it is not a great law practice management strategy to complete on cost. Many potential customers will see pricing that is too low as a signal that there is something missing either from the service, the supplier, or the firm. And people who are searching for a low cost will follow that low price anywhere they can discover it instead of ending up being long-term customers. Be sure that your cost covers your expenses and a sensible revenue margin.

The Cost Method in Law Practice Management Pricing

This law practice management prices approach is extremely straightforward actually. The most typical error in law practice management utilizing this technique is to disregard to include some form of your cost.

OK, let me say it again. In law practice management typically you count yourself out of the expenses and you need to include yourself in the expenses. Why? Frequently you are doing at least a few of the technical work. Yes? Often you are doing a minimum of a few of the management work. Yes? As the owner of the company you are due a affordable profit. Yes? If you are all 3 of these in one, you need to think about one salary as due you for your time and competence as the professional and manager along with a earnings of fifteen to thirty percent due you as the owner. So make sure to include a reasonable cost for your supervisory and technical work in the expenditures part of this formula.

Fixed Rate Method in Law Practice Management Prices

This is the approach utilized by many automobile mechanics (it is called "the flat rate book") and other service companies. This technique is where you figure out a set rate for different jobs and charge that rate no matter what. Another example using this method is how managed linked here health care has actually used this system with healthcare facilities and medical professionals .

The "Rule of 3" in Law Practice Management Pricing

This " general rule" called the " guideline of 3" utilized in law practice management is not what your CPA might tell you and it does not fail you either. Ask your CPA what they consider it and they will like it. To start we are going to be thinking in thirds. For the first third we will take the total quantity of salaries/bonuses (not advantages just incomes-- benefits enter into the 2nd 3rd following) for the income generators and/or timekeepers (this includes you if you are generating revenue) and call that our very first 3rd. So include up the wages of the legal representatives, paralegals, and legal secretaries who generate profits or are timekeepers and call this your first third (lets simply state that number was $100,000 to keep it simple). Whatever that number is take that number again and it is your second 3rd which we will call your "overhead" (thus that second 3rd is $100,000 and don't forget you if you are doing some managing partner type responsibilities because that part of your time goes here in overhead). Take that very same number and we will call that your last 3rd, which we will call gross earnings (another $100,000). What you require to do is take the overall quantity (in this example $300,000) and now determine how much you should charge per billable hour, per fixed rate or how lots of contingency fee cases won to be sure you struck the target we should strike given our first 3rd number times 3 (in this example $300,000).

This approach reveals you how much per hour you require to charge. If you are the owner of the practice you are worthy of a fair revenue as well do not you agree? If this approach is a bit too confusing do feel free to call me and I will help you arrange it out in a few minutes on the phone.

It is a excellent concept to think through all of these rates techniques in determining your law practice management pricing method before setting a rate and moving ahead with a law firm marketing plan to ensure you are completely exploring all alternatives. In another short article I will tell you how to speak to potential customers so you never ever have a click here for info problem getting the cost you should have.

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