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Flat Fees for Fun and Profit with Lee Rosen

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Clients love flat fees; lawyers worry about them. Driven by client demand, hourly billing is on its last legs and flat fees are fast becoming the norm in legal billing. It's becoming crucial that …

Clients love flat fees; lawyers worry about them. Driven by client demand, hourly billing is on its last legs and flat fees are fast becoming the norm in legal billing. It's becoming crucial that firms acquaint themselves with the practical and ethical issues that are associated with flat fee billing.

Join Lee Rosen (lawyer, blogger, and expert on the modern practice) of Divorce Discourse and Clio's own Joshua Lenon in this live webinar as they discuss how forward-thinking lawyers are utilizing flat fees in their firms' billing structure.

In this free Clio Webinar, we'll cover:

- What is a flat-fee pricing model? Can your firm profit?
- What ethical issues are involved in charging clients a flat fee?
- How do you calculate a fair flat fee?

Published in Law
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Transcript

  • 1. Flat Fees for Fun and Profit Lee Rosen – Divorce Discourse Joshua Lenon – Clio Text
  • 2. Agenda •  Flat Fees with Lee Rosen (40 minutes) – Covering the rules, ethics, and customer perception behind flat fees •  Riverview Law Case Study (10 minutes) – How one firm has excelled with flat fees •  Questions (10 minutes)
  • 3. Instructors Joshua Lenon •  Lawyer, admitted in New York •  Lawyer-in-Residence for Clio Lee Rosen •  Founder of Rosen Law Firm •  Triathlete •  Blogger at Divorce Discourse
  • 4. Flat fees f o r f u n a n d p r o f i t Lee rosen presents:
  • 5. lee rosen Using flat fees billing in family law for over a decade.
  • 6. Inspired by being charged an hourly rate by an IT professional
  • 7. Being charged while sharing travel tips
  • 8. That same week, I paid a fixed fee to a plumber for a quick repair.
  • 9. Between a chatty, hourly- billing IT consultant & the fixed fee plumber, which do you think I hired again?
  • 10. w h y s w i t c h t o f l a t f e e s ?
  • 11. upside for lawyers f l a t f e e s
  • 12. u p s i d e f o r l a w y e r s •  LAWYERS CAN FOCUS ON PREMIUM WORK •  DRIVES AWAY UNPROFITABLE BUSINESS •  CLIENTS FULLY INFORM LAWYERS WHEN NOT WORRIED ABOUT BILLING •  ELIMINATES COLLECTIONS •  ELIMINATES RECEIVABLES
  • 13. upside for clients f l a t f e e s
  • 14. u p s i d e f o r C l i e n t s •  REDUCED ANXIETY •  ABILITY TO MAKE INFORMED COST/BENEFIT DECISIONS •  BETTER REPRESENTATION WHEN THEY TRUST THEIR LAWYER
  • 15. the client reactions
  • 16. T h e c l i e n t r e a c t i o n s •  CLIENTS LOVE IT •  LESS STRESS WHEN CALL THEIR COUNSEL •  LESS WORRY ABOUT COSTS
  • 17. is there a downside?
  • 18. D o w n s i d e s •  FIRMS TAKE ON MORE RISK •  UPFRONT COSTS CAN DETER SOME CLIENTS •  REQUIRES REVIEW AND TWEAKING TO GET PRICE RIGHT •  MAY IMPACT AVAILABLE LINES OF CREDIT •  REFUNDS REQUIRE SETTING ASIDE FUNDS IN ADVANCE
  • 19. u p s i d e s •  YOU GET PAID •  ONLY WORKING WHEN YOU GET PAID •  YOU AVOID LENDING YOUR TIME AND HOPING ITS REPAID IN FEES
  • 20. T h e S t a t e B a r
  • 21. S t a t e b a r s •  KNOW THE RULES FOR FLAT FEES AND REFUNDS •  RESEARCH ETHICS OPINIONS •  CONSULT ETHICS HOTLINES •  BE BOLD WITHIN THAT INFORMATION
  • 22. S e t t i n g y o u r f l a t f e e s •  START FROM HISTORIC DATA •  COMPARE APPLES TO APPLES •  FIND MINIMUM AND AVERAGE COSTS PER TYPES OF MATTERS •  ADD A PREMIUM TO THOSE AVERAGE COSTS
  • 23. m a k i n g t h e t r a n s i t i o n
  • 24. Explaining flat fees a c l i e n t s p e r s p e c t i v e
  • 25. E x p l a i n i n g f l a t f e e s •  TAKES SALESMANSHIP •  EXPLAIN HOW IT WORKS •  EXPLAIN HOW IT REDUCES UNCERTAINTY •  EXPLAIN WHY YOU DO IT •  PUT IT IN WRITING
  • 26. lessons learned
  • 27. E x p l a i n i n g f l a t f e e s •  SET FEES AFTER CONSULT, ACCOUNTING FOR VARIABLES •  STAGE THE FEES – BEGINNING, MIDDLE, END •  KEEP RECORDING TIME •  ACCEPT THAT SOME REFUNDS WILL HAPPEN •  KEEP RECALCULATING FLAT FEES AS YOU GET MORE DATA
  • 28. c o m p e t i t i v e a d v a n t a g e
  • 29. d i v o r c e d i s c o u r s e . c o m / f e e s
  • 30. Thank you d i v o r c e d i s c o u r s e . c o m L e e r o s e n r o s e n @ r o s e n . c o m
  • 31. RIVERVIEW LAW CASE STUDY
  • 32. Success •  20-30% Cheaper than Traditional Law Firms •  Unbundled Services with Fixed Costs •  Frequent Reporting •  Only 45% of Staff are Lawyers •  Doubling of Employees since 2012
  • 33. Customer Base 16#Months# to# 09/30/2013# Year#to# 09/30/2013# An4cipated# 09/30/2014# Small%&%medium% sized%business% 39%% 12%% 8%% Li6ga6on%&% representa6on% 55%% 64%% 31%% Large% corpora6ons% 6%% 24%% 61%%
  • 34. Financial Rewards •  Double-digit growth rates •  Two year’s old and breaking even in 2015 •  £1,944,761 in 2014 ($3,300,280)
  • 35. Stats and the Flat Fee Whitepaper hAp://gocl.io/flaFee%
  • 36. QUESTIONS