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LawBiz® TIPS – Week of June 16, 2015

LawBiz(r) newsletter

The legal profession continues to reflect our society. The number of Baby Boomers continues to grow. The calls from lawyers seeking information about options to closing their doors likewise continues to increase.

The number of incubators, i.e., groups of recently graduated lawyers seeking information about running their practice profitably and skillfully now exceeds 40, the latest of which is in Southern California, with initial "seed money" coming from The State Bar of California.

Life is constantly becoming more complex, requiring the interpretive and advocacy powers of a lawyer. Matching skilled and affordable supply with demand has always been the issue; it still is.

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Stop Whining and Start Collecting

"Woe is me" is not an attitude worthy of any lawyer when it comes to collections issues. If clients aren't paying their bills, lawyers need to stop whining and start evaluating—their own behavior.

First step to getting paid: Stop blaming the clients. True, the clients are the ones not paying bills for work completed in good faith. But law firms are not the victims of their delinquent clients. Rather, law firms are the victims of their own poor collections policies. You and the firm itself cause your collection problems by not telling clients from the beginning what you expect from them. Thus, you and your firm are the only ones who can solve your collection problems.

Firms fall into collection problems for a variety of reasons. Often an overriding fear is the loss of business. For this reason, partners accept work for clients who are unsuitable. Another reason for collection problems is that the firm has no written collections policy; thus, each partner handles the collections differently. Firms can cause themselves collection problems because they refuse to use outside collection agencies to help them collect on their overdue accounts. All of these factors can lead to collections disasters.

Think of it this way: If you do not create a collections policy, your customers will, in essence do it for you—but it may be a collections policy that is not to your liking. In other words, if you have trouble collecting your billings, your clients have created your collections policy—a lax one. And their version of your collections policy will not contribute significantly to your bottom line or cash flow.

You need to create a collections policy and stick to it. Only you and the lawyers in your firm can stem the flow of bad debts and overdue accounts.


Stop Whining and Start Collecting

Check out this month's special!

LawBiz® Registry: Buy or Sell Your Practice

Ed Poll on YouTube

Buy or Sell Your Practice 

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New Life After Law Coaching Program



"Ed's command of the podium and his connection and interaction with the audience were outstanding. His skills enabled us to successfully implement a new culture into the organization without damaging our relationships with outside counsel."

Torrance, CA

"When I had my own private practice as a solo practitioner, I wanted to run my office as efficiently and profitably as possible. I researched business coaches and discovered that most had "passive" models as their basis for coaching, i.e. they would promise all the things they would do for my practice without my having to invest time and energy into the process. I'm so glad I chose Ed Poll instead, for he had an "active" model, i.e. how much I got out of the coaching was directly dependent upon what I put into it. Over a period of six months, Ed conferenced with me and gave me weekly assignments for structuring my practice as well as giving me tips on how to work with clients from the initial interview through to the end of the case. After working with Ed, I didn't have a single outstanding account receivable over $500. The time I spent working with Ed was invaluable and I would recommend him to any attorneys interested in improving the quality and profitability of their practices."

Los Angeles, CA


Ed Poll, LawBiz® Management   |   |   |   |


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