Perhaps you run a busy law practice and a talented freelance lawyer has agreed to help with your overflow legal work and you are eager to get started.
Or, you are a freelance lawyer and you found your first lawyer client who has some interesting work for you.
In either situation, before any work begins, it is important to outline the details of your working relationship in a freelance lawyer agreement.
Not sure where to start? We provide some guidance on drafting this type of agreement:
Flexible hours, supplemental income, remote opportunities, and family are just some of the reasons experienced lawyers are deliberately choosing freelancing as a path forward (1).
Freelancing, propelled by new technologies and a growth in remote work arrangements, is on the rise across all industries, and the legal field is no exception. Data from the US shows that 51% of law firms are using freelance lawyers, also known as contract lawyers, as an alternative staffing strategy (2). Filling this need, more and more lawyers are turning to freelancing, as a deliberate choice, seeking the benefits freelancing has to offer.
So, why are experienced lawyers giving up the security and comfort of a traditional job for freelancing? Hint, not because they can’t find a ‘real’ job!
Have you scheduled an initial call with a potential lawyer client? That’s great, but you still have a long way to go before the work can begin.
As a freelancer, it is normal to book several initial calls or interviews with busy lawyers or law firms but only see a few of them translate into actual paying clients. Likely, you are one of many candidates the hiring lawyer is interviewing. Or they are not yet convinced that a freelance lawyer is right for their firm.
While this can be frustrating, and you may never book %100 of the potential freelance gigs, there are things you can control to improve your conversion rate. Keep reading to learn how you can convey to other lawyers the advantage of a freelance lawyer and why you are the best person for the job.
Are you thinking of hiring a freelance lawyer to assist with your overflow legal work? Not sure if the rate they have quoted is reasonable?
Here are three important considerations to keep in mind when reviewing a freelance lawyer’s hourly rate:
Flex Legal's Founder & CEO, Erin Cowling, was recently interviewed by Immigration Lawyer, Evelyn Ackah, for Evelyn's podcast "Ask". Erin and Evelyn discuss the story of Flex Legal, the opportunities and obstacles of entrepreneurship, and what is next for Erin and the Flex Legal Network.
Find the episode HERE
Access more episodes of the "Ask Canadian Immigration Lawyer Evelyn Ackah" podcast HERE
Are you looking for some law student help with your busy law firm but not necessarily a full-time law student? We have a solution for you.
While Flex Legal provides advanced freelance legal services (our freelance lawyers have between 5-20 years of post-call experience) we wanted to introduce you to a new freelance service by law students at the University of Ottawa Faculty of Law (Common Law). With the global pandemic many students lost their summer jobs or had their hours reduced significantly. To assist these students, the University has created a program to connect law firms and students through freelance opportunities. According to the University:
“This initiative pairs employers in need of short-term support with students eager to build on their practical experiences. The Career and Professional Development Centre will post freelance or short-term contract opportunities for law students. These contracts could, for example, be for a single piece of research, remunerated on an hourly basis, with a set number of hours allocated to the work.”
A student can also assist a lawyer or law firm with: social medial marketing, blog post drafting, website updates, client outreach, customer satisfaction surveys, etc.
We thought this would be a great opportunity to introduce our clients to this initiative and encourage you to take advantage of it if you have student level work to outsource.
You can find more information on the initiative here.
If you would like to post a short-term opportunity for students, you can fill out the form at the following link. The University then makes the information available to their students. The University will not post unpaid positions.
For any questions, please feel free to contact Chantal Riendeau (email@example.com) at the Career and Professional Development Centre.
This service is provided directly through the University of Ottawa. Flex Legal is not profiting from this initiative. We are happy to do our part, give back to the community, and support these students who need our help. Flex's founder, Erin Cowling, is also the Regional Alumni Advisor (Toronto) for the University of Ottawa (Faculty of Law).
Check out Erin's interview with Vivene Salmon, President of the CBA and fellow law-preneur, Kim Gale for The Everyday Lawyer Podcast.
Erin, Kim and Vivene talk about going solo and the challenges and rewards of starting your own practice:
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