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Virtual Law?
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In a recent pod cast sponsored by Catuongo Court Reporting, the LegalTalkNetwork interviewed attorney Stephanie Kimbro of Kimbro Legal Services.  Ms. Kimbro is a legal practitioner licensed in North Carolina that operates a “virtual law firm.”  The idea of virtual business is as commonplace as on-line shopping or smart phone technology these days.  We’ve all shopped at Amazon.com and we’ve all conducted some part of our jobs via our phones – but the idea of providing a wide array of legal services without the comfort of an office in the right part of town, or a receptionist, or a legal assistant or an accounting staff?  Barbarism!?

More and more, in the current economic climate, practitioners are looking for ways to cut down on overhead.  Lower overhead means more profit.   Lower overhead also allows one to pass some of the savings on to clients who, no doubt, feel the crunch of the recession as much as anyone.

The American Bar Association, no less, endorses such tech-forward practices and more and more attorneys are heeding its advice while trying to streamline their business models and practices.

  
What
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There are many ways in which “virtual firms” can take advantage of the tech resources out in the market – bringing in clients, hiring contract employees who work from home via the internet, creating the infrastructure to support those employees (billing, e-mail, software applications, etc.) on a cloud server or Citrix, web-based telecommunications.   All of these technologies, among others not mentioned, have the advantage of any time and any place access.  There are also many on-line services available to legal professionals that specialize in e-filing and act as a liaison between local courts and law practices since most local courts have no standardized electronic filing rules and guidelines akin to the stringent Federal ones.

To make a potentially long story short, both solo lawyers and mid-to-small sized practices have a whole new world of tech resources at their fingertips waiting to be tapped that could help them reach out to more clients and boost profits.  They need only reach out and grab them.

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