TaxProf Blog

Editor: Paul L. Caron, Dean
Pepperdine University School of Law

Monday, January 13, 2014

How I Started My Own Law Firm Right After Law School

Business Insider:  How I Started My Own Law Firm Right After Law School, by Branigan Robertson (J.D. 2012, Chapman):

Starting a law firm is not for the faint of heart. Doing it right out of law school is downright insane (at least that’s what the naysayers would have you believe).

But I did it in a difficult economy with a difficult fee structure (contingency) and my practice is thriving. If you want to start your own firm, you can do it — and I’m going to tell you how.

Here is a list of the essential things you must do to succeed in starting your own law firm right out of school:

  1. Ignore the People Who Say You Can’t
  2. Plan Ahead
  3. Pick Only One Area of Law
  4. Pick the Right Area of Law
  5. Build a Referral Network
  6. Build a Website Immediately
  7. Join Organizations and Listservs
  8. Remember That Clients Don’t Care About Your GPA, Law Review, or Age

Legal Education | Permalink


I was filled with trepidation when I first went out on my own, thinking I would not know enough to provide the level of service I believe clients deserve. Having seen partners at small and big firms fail to know the answers to client questions eased the anxiety a lot. A great mentor once taught me that managing client expectations was a key element to being successful. This means do not undersell yourself, but also do not oversell. Clients expect candor, and while some lawyers build a client base with puffery, you will have a lasting business by building trust with each client.

Oh +1 to build a website immediately. You should also read up on SEO, as many companies are willing to charge a lot of money for these services, when much can be done by yourself with time and dedication.

Posted by: Daniel Waters | Jan 13, 2014 8:25:00 AM

Hmmm...the absence of specificity = Underpants Gnome business model

Posted by: cas127 | Jan 13, 2014 11:24:53 AM

I expected this guy to be a CPA-lawyer who started his law practice by prepping 1040s and pitching 1040Xs (amended returns) for prior years to get refunds for his clients. That is a need I see in the real world all the time. But nope. This fellow is a California lawyer who sues employers on behalf of employees who have been wronged. Sad.

Posted by: I actually read the article | Jan 15, 2014 8:34:31 AM