A law firm, also known as a corporation, is an organization formed by at least one lawyer to engage in the specialized practice of law. The primary function performed by a law firm is to advice clients about their legal obligations and rights, including those related to real estate, corporate business matters, personal injury, family law, and juvenile law. Many times, a law firm offers these services on a limited basis. This type of arrangement is common when a client or lawyer is new, has little experience or does not wish to take on the comprehensive work required in full-service.
There are different types of partners in a law firm. The partners at times can be referred to as partners, general partners or proprietors. The nature of each partner’s relationship with the other will have a direct impact upon the outcome of cases. Some partners manage the firm while some perform the duties traditionally performed by associates. Associates generally report to the partners. Whether working independently or as part of a larger team, associates participate in the decision making process regarding legal matters that affect the company and its associates.
At times, law firms have partners that act as the sole litigator or assign the responsibility to one associate. This situation can be beneficial to a firm in that the litigator is knowledgeable about the most pressing issues facing the firm. It can also limit the expense associated with litigating a case. In contrast, if two or more associates are assigned the responsibility of litigating a given case, it increases the likelihood that the litigation will become costly. Most law firms hire several associates to focus on different aspects of the firm’s activities, depending upon the complexity of the litigation in question.
While a law firm may use different types of professionals to perform various tasks, the most important professional services provided are experienced lawyers. A successful firm must ensure that all of its legal partners are knowledgeable about the most pressing issues facing the firm. The most effective solution for insuring this is ensuring that each partner has strong backgrounds in the most critical areas of the law. There are some lawyers who specialize in only criminal cases or civil litigation. There are other lawyers who have strong experience in both areas.
These lawyers typically handle the most complex cases that require them to develop extensive expertise in the area of law in which they are working. When selecting legal partners, law firms should make sure to hire experienced professionals with diverse skill sets. It is not enough for an experienced attorney to have a broad range of experience. The individuals the law firm chooses must have strong skill sets in a number of different areas. For instance, the most successful law firms often hire criminal defense lawyers, while those focusing on corporate crime issues will likely focus on corporate attorneys. The ideal partner would have strong experience in the area of the law in which the firm works.
Some law firms are particularly strict when it comes to selecting partners. In these circumstances, the firm tends to focus on personality instead of skill sets and competencies. These type of law firms are not concerned with developing and supporting a team of skilled professionals. The opposite is true. These types of law firms tend to focus on hiring experienced professionals who can successfully handle complex cases and bring out the best in their clients.
There are several advantages to partnering with other law firms. Typically, law firms with partners share expenses and resources. This sharing allows the law firm to reduce operational costs by reducing the need to provide legal services at a cost. In addition, joint owners can hire additional staff members at a reduced cost since each partner’s contribution is limited. Moreover, the partners share in the partners’ profits and they benefit from the success of their colleagues in building larger clientele bases.
Successful law firms must be able to attract and retain the best legal partners to supplement the team of lawyers and attorneys it already has. The law firm needs to ensure that it retains partners who can effectively manage the firm’s clients and resources. Ideally, the partners choose to join the firm should have an ability to make critical decisions, coordinate and lead the firm’s efforts, and be willing to put in the necessary hours and effort. The partners also need to be able to handle different projects and work within a team atmosphere. Additionally, successful law firms must be proactive in seeking out key talent for partner positions and actively promoting to existing partners those individuals who may be the next best thing in town.