How to Compile a Checklist for Starting a New Law Firm

The following is a checklist for opening a new law firm. Try to check off each of these items before opening up that law firm.

Steps

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    Prepare a Checklist of these Forms
    • Form LLP or PC or other entity
    • Prepare Partnership Agreement
    • Get Office Space
    • Get Telephone Numbers
    • Get Fax Number
    • Get E-mail Addresses
    • Create Website
    • Get Business Cards
    • Get Stationery
    • Get Malpractice Insurance
    • Trademark Firm Name
    • Prepare Retainer Agreement
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    Form LLP or PC or other entity
    • An LLP or limited liability partnership operates in a fashion similar to that of a partnership, but in contrast, an LLP offers limited liability for legal action against its members for their acts undertaken as partners.
    • An LLC or limited liability corporation offers limited liability to its owners for acts undertaken by the corporation. Only the corporation becomes liable for such acts, except that a manager may be held liable for his acts if they are criminal, in bad faith or undertaken in conscious disregard of the corporation's best interest.
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    Prepare Partnership Agreement
    • Decide on a business name for your partnership
    • Search availability of your partnership's chosen business name, and for similarity to existing names.
    • Register your partnership name
    • Create and sign a written partnership agreement
    • Register your partnership by filing a "certificate" or "registration" of partnership with the Secretary of State office.
    • Obtain business licenses and permits for your partnership. This includes the Federal government, State government, and the local government
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    Searching for office space
    • Go to a commercial Realtor to determine the location, space, expense that would best suit your business for the first two years.
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    Get a telephone and fax number. Try looking for listing of business that provide phone and fax services for, there are some companies that give great phone service as little as $10 a month.
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    Get an email address. Companies like AOL allow their customers to get an email domain depending on how much they wish to spend each month so, searching for the right email domain on a budget is another good place to start.
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    Creating a website and business cards is very simple. Business cards do not cost that much so you can make them at home or go to a local copy place and have them done or use online websites such as Vistaprint to make your business cards. If you wish to go cheap on your website use Blogger or WordPress that charge nearly a quarter of the amount you would spend paying a domain name every month but, if you wish to spend the extra money find websites that you can buy a domain name.
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    Getting Stationary is simple. This can be done on a Word Document or Microsoft Access but, you can find other places that can make your stationary but, it will cost you.
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    Get Malpractice insurance. Lawyers pay less in malpractice than doctors because lawyers are usually the ones defending the doctor when they have a malpractice case on their hands.
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    Trademark Firm Name
    • Try searching through websites such as SBA.gov and uspto.gov that give you tips and guidelines on how to trademark your company name.
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    Prepare Retainer Agreement
    • Use websites like Findlaw and SBA to get a good idea on what you should do when it comes to getting a retainer agreement.

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Categories: Retaining a Lawyer