Financially Legal

Episode 10: What is the role of civil rights attorneys in the fight to rectify civil injustice? An interview with Geri Green and Cynthia Chandler

Posted by Dan Lear on July 8, 2020

Geri Green and Cynthia Chandler have been fighting for marginalized individuals both in and out of courts for decades. In this episode of Financially Legal we talk about how and why, according to the 2019 Clio Trends report, civil rights attorneys bill for so little of their work (20% - the lowest of any practice area) and collect so little of what they bill (80% - third lowest). 

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Topics: Financially Legal Episodes

Dan Talks Law Firm Finances, Company Culture and More with Mark Homer of GNGF

Posted by Emery Wager on June 27, 2020

Dan Lear was recently interviewed by Mark Homer of legal marketing firm GNGF. Dan and Mark dove into many different topics including: 

  • Company culture
  • A $70,000 minimum wage
  • The Gravity Legal platform
  • Law firm finance
  • Alternative fee structures
  • Expectations of the modern consumer of legal services
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Topics: Firm Financials, Key Performance Metrics, IOLTA, Accounting, Business and Culture

Gravity Legal's Dan Lear and Emery Wager Featured on Martindale-Avvo's Legal Tech Event

Posted by Emery Wager on June 26, 2020

This week Dan Lear and Emery Wager joined Erin Levine of Hello Divorce and Liam Moriarty of Lawgood to talk the future Legal Tech. 

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Topics: Firm Financials, Key Performance Metrics, Business and Culture

Episode 9: A legal “plan?” What does that even mean? And why would you sell one to contractors? An interview with Seth Bloom from Levelset

Posted by Dan Lear on June 24, 2020

Seth Bloom is the Sr. Director of Attorney Services at Levelset. If you’re not familiar with Levelset, it’s a company that helps all kinds of contractors, but particularly those in the construction space get paid and focus on what they like to do. It’s most relevant for legal professionals because those contractors often file, manage, and – when things go south - litigate liens. Enter Seth and the network of attorneys he’s building to help those construction professionals sort all of that out; but Seth's story doesn’t start there.

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Topics: Financially Legal Episodes

Episode 8: Can you balance work and life? Should you even try? Is there anyone out there who can help you? An interview with Erin Giglia from Montage Legal Group

Posted by Dan Lear on June 10, 2020

Erin Giglia is the Co-Owner of Montage Legal Group. As you’ll hear, Montage was founded more than a decade ago to exploit a “gap in the marketplace between freelancers and law firms.” Since then the model that Erin and her co-founder Laurie established has been emulated, adapted and admired by firms and freelance legal business across the legal sector.

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Topics: Financially Legal Episodes

Simple Strategies To Cashflow Success For Your Law Firm (even during COVID)

Posted by Emery Wager on May 30, 2020

Written By Devon Thurtle Anderson, CEO of Financial Consulting Firm, Skepsis

When I first left my law practice to become a law firm bookkeeper and financial strategist, I was shocked to discover how many law firms struggle with cashflow.  Even more surprising was that this struggle isn’t just limited to a few seemingly rag-tag solo general practice firms.  To the contrary, when I had a chance to look under the hood at dozens of law firms’ books and financial records – including law firms I had always seen as hugely successful – I learned that almost every law firm has a cashflow problem within any given 12-month period.  So, as part of my bookkeeping and consulting services, I set out to change that.

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Topics: Firm Financials, Credit Card Fees, Key Performance Metrics, IOLTA, Accounting, Invoices

Is Your Firm Ready for Re-entry?

Posted by Dan Lear on May 29, 2020

Back in March I shared three things that I learned from the Small Law Firm Coronavirus Growth Symposium put on by How to Manage a Small Law Firm. At that time, when uncertainty and fear about our current predicament were at its peak, the content of the Growth Symposium offered a powerful reminder to stay positive and focused.

As the country begins, at least in some quarters, to open back up the good people from How To Manage a Small Law Firm are back with another program titled (in a very on-brand way) How to Not Screw Up Your Law Office’s Re-Entry.

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Topics: Business and Culture

Episode 7: How do you “show up” for your clients? And what does a premium subscription have to do with that? An interview with Kim Bennett from K. Bennett Law

Posted by Dan Lear on May 27, 2020

Kim Bennett got burned by hourly billing. She lost a bunch of money and, having come up as a young lawyer in a corporate, in-house role, the model didn’t make sense to her. One day she pitched a client on a recurring monthly fee and, to her surprise, they accepted. That’s right, we’re talking subscriptions again. But where the guest from our last subscription-based law practice, Jon Tobin, uses subscriptions in more of a "one-to-many" way, helping lots of clients with a specific set of offerings, Kim has fewer what she calls “premium” subscriptions and they include more comprehensive, regular work with the clients.

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Topics: Credit Card Fees, Financially Legal Episodes, Accounting

The Most Important Things Lawyers Can Do in the Wake of COVID-19

Posted by Emery Wager on May 15, 2020

By Dan Price

This article was originally published on the Attorney Action Club

The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the already terrible inequality we have in the United States. Prior to the outbreak, income inequality was the highest it had been in fifty years. Now, with more than 30 million people unemployed, it’s likely to get even higher for the foreseeable future.

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Topics: Business and Culture

Two Ways Law Firms Can Reduce the Cost of Accepting Credit Cards

Posted by Emery Wager on May 15, 2020

Credit cards are a great way to get paid more quickly. The Clio trends report shows that firms who accept credit cards get paid 39% faster than those that don't. 

But credit cards are expensive. For invoice or trust payments where the client enters the card, rather than swiping or dipping, the cost generally hovers around 3%. Furthermore, credit cards are not the only way to provide a high-quality online payment experience.  

Shopping around for better rates can save you a few tenths of a percent, but here are two changes you can make to drastically reduce card fees while still getting the benefit of speedy payments. 

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Topics: Firm Financials, Credit Card Fees

Episode 6: An episode about accounting? Really? An interview with Chelsea Williams from Core Solutions Group, Inc.

Posted by Dan Lear on May 13, 2020

I know you didn’t go to law school to manage financials or be an accountant, but it turns out that your ability to successfully support and represent your clients is contingent upon running a sound business. And Chelsea Williams, founder and head of Core Solutions Group, is dropping some wisdom about how to manage your firm’s finances so that you can worry less about money and more about your clients. 

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Topics: Credit Card Fees, Financially Legal Episodes, Accounting

4 Steps to Effective A/R Management

Posted by Emery Wager on May 2, 2020

Managing accounts receivable is important when times are good. But when times are tough, how effectively firms turn accounts receivable into cash can be the difference between going under and thriving.

Expert law firm financial consultant, Chelsea Williams of Core Solutions Group has an excellent video outlining four tips for effective accounts receivable management. Below is a summary, but we highly recommend checking out the video.

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Topics: Firm Financials, Key Performance Metrics

Episode 5: Can you sell legal services by subscription? Should you? An interview with Jon Tobin from Counsel for Creators

Posted by Dan Lear on April 29, 2020

Subscriptions services for a law-firm? It might be what your clients are looking for.

Jon Tobin is running one of the most innovative law firms you’ve never heard of. Counsel For Creators is an LA-based law firm for creatives and entrepreneurs that sells a subscription to clients. In this episode of Financially Legal we talk with Jon about the inspiration behind his subscription legal services plan, how he made it a reality, how (amazingly) it’s morphing into a profitable, self-sustaining community, how he calls his clients members and what’s next for his bold firm.  

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Topics: Credit Card Fees, Financially Legal Episodes

Episode 4: Can one small company change the world? Can one small law firm? An interview with Dan Price

Posted by Dan Lear on April 14, 2020

Dan Price is a big deal. Full stop. And we got him on the podcast!

Dan is the i
nspirational CEO of Gravity Payments. In 2015 Dan raised the salaries of each of his employees at Gravity Payments to $70,000 annually and, in doing so, he became an overnight business celebrity. He’s been on the Today Show, been interviewed by Trevor Noah, and keynoted hundreds of business conferences around the world. He breaks down how he thinks about company culture, why Gravity Payments is investing in Gravity Legal, and how he thinks lawyers can change the world.

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Topics: Credit Card Fees, Financially Legal Episodes

Three Things I Learned from the HTM Coronavirus Growth Symposium and Why You Should Attend

Posted by Dan Lear on April 6, 2020

Starting back on March 23, RJon Robins of How To Manage a Small Law Firm held a series of free daily phone conversations with lawyers  in response to the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic. RJon was his typically direct but his message was hopeful: there is opportunity out there for lawyers and law firms .

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Topics: Firm Financials

Gravity Legal's Dan Lear Featured on the Clio Daily Matters Podcast

Posted by Emery Wager on April 1, 2020

In this episode of Clio Matters, Dan discusses different ways firms are navigating the new remote work environment. He lists helpful technology resources and tells us whose ideas he's leaning on amidst the chaos (Nate Silver and RJon Robins of How to Manage a Small Law Firm to name a few).  

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Topics: Firm Financials, Credit Card Fees, Key Performance Metrics, IOLTA

Episode 3: Why do trust accounts even exist? And why should we care?

Posted by Dan Lear on March 25, 2020

We get nerdy this episode talking accounting, trust accounting, and regulatory jazz with Lainie Hammond.  Lainie runs a law firm in Washington State helping lawyers with issues related to IOLTA trust account compliance.

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Topics: Firm Financials, Financially Legal Episodes, IOLTA

Five Ways to Shore Up Your Law Firm's Finances Now

Posted by Dan Lear on March 23, 2020

Our lives and livelihoods have changed dramatically over the last two weeks. We’re all hopeful for a swift and significant rebound, but proactive measures will carry the day. Action in crisis can provide a feeling of purpose and normalcy amidst the potentially overwhelming uncertainty. It can also be the difference between going under and thriving.    

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Topics: Firm Financials, Credit Card Fees

State Rules on Charging Clients a Fee for Paying With Credit Cards

Posted by Emery Wager on March 19, 2020

There are three sets of rules lawyers need to navigate  when deciding whether to charge clients a fee for paying with a credit card:

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Topics: Firm Financials, Credit Card Fees

Covid 19 Financial Resources for Firms and Their Clients

Posted by Emery Wager on March 19, 2020

Whether your firm is in need of financial assistance or you are working to advise clients through these difficult times, we've compiled a list of local, state and national Covid 19 financial relief programs. 

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Topics: Firm Financials

Episode 2: The Agile Attorney

Posted by Dan Lear on February 29, 2020

Today, we're excited to have a conversation with John E. Grant, the Agile Attorney. John is a compelling thinker when it comes to law firm economics, law firm efficiency, and law firm productivity. 

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Topics: Firm Financials, Financially Legal Episodes, Key Performance Metrics

Episode 1: Intro to Financially Legal

Posted by Dan Lear on February 29, 2020

Welcome to the very first episode of Financially Legal, with your host, Dan Lear, head of partnerships and marketing at Gravity Legal. 

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Topics: Firm Financials, Financially Legal Episodes

Oklahoma is Latest State Looking to Allow Credit Card Surcharges

Posted by Emery Wager on February 13, 2020

Oklahoma Attorney General, Mike Hunter, in a recent opinion said a state ban on surcharging is most-likely unconstitutional. Surcharging is the practice of charging an additional fee when clients pay by credit card.

Clients should know what it costs law firms to accept credit cards, and those clients should have the option to save money by paying with less expensive methods. Since card brand surcharging rules prevent firms from charging more for the surcharge than the amount of the transaction, it ends up not being a money-making scheme but a clear way to communicate how much those airline miles really cost.

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Topics: Firm Financials, Credit Card Fees

The Real Cost of Accounts Receivable

Posted by Emery Wager on February 3, 2020

Getting clients to pay isn’t easy. As more invoices remain outstanding, accounts receivable creeps upward. As an attorney responsible for the firm's financial success, it's important to understand the real cost of accounts receivable. Here's a simple way to estimate those costs.

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Topics: Firm Financials

Understanding Credit Card Processing Fees for Law Firms

Posted by Emery Wager on January 15, 2020

For many law firms, credit card processing fees are a sizeable item on the income statement. Because there are a wide variety of different types of processing fees, it can be difficult to figure out exactly how much you’re paying. It's also why, at Gravity, we try to simplify this process as much as possible, primarily by offering a fair and transparent pricing structure while providing all the important information in a one-page monthly statement without the jargon. In this article we'll cover the three different categories of processing fees as well as the most commonly-used credit card processing pricing models. 

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Topics: Firm Financials, Credit Card Fees, Surcharging

Can Law Firms Charge Clients for Credit Card Fees in Oklahoma?

Posted by Emery Wager on January 1, 2020

Introduction

The short answer is probably, but there are certain rules and regulations to understand. 

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Topics: Firm Financials, Accounting, Surcharging

Can Law Firms Charge Clients for Credit Card Fees in West Virginia?

Posted by Emery Wager on January 1, 2020

Introduction

The short answer is probably not. See below for all the details. 

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Topics: Firm Financials, Accounting, Surcharging

Can Law Firms Charge Clients for Credit Card Fees in Tennessee?

Posted by Emery Wager on January 1, 2020

Introduction

The short answer is yes, but there are certain rules and regulations to understand. 

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Topics: Firm Financials, Accounting, Surcharging

Can Law Firms Charge Clients for Credit Card Fees in North Dakota?

Posted by Emery Wager on January 1, 2020

Introduction

The short answer is yes, but there are certain rules and regulations to understand. 

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Topics: Firm Financials, Accounting, Surcharging

Can Law Firms Charge Clients for Credit Card Fees in Nebraska?

Posted by Emery Wager on January 1, 2020

Introduction

The short answer is maybe, but probably not. See below for details.  

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Topics: Firm Financials, Accounting, Surcharging

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Decoding the Finance of Law

Financially Legal is a twice-monthly podcast on the finance and economics of entrepreneurial law firms and lawyering. Host, Dan Lear, talks with law firm leaders, academics, business professionals (both in and outside of law) and thought leaders to provide compelling and provocative content at the intersection of finance, economics, and law. 

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