That's despite the reality that lawyers who participate in this business model trade off the status and financial security of BigLaw. They may also not have access to those large brandname corporations and individuals as clients.
In Law.com, Roy Strom explains what a virtual law firm is. Essentially, they work like this:
"Lawyers keep up to 80 percent of the revenue they generate. They give the other 20 percent to the owners of the firm. And they typically work from home, providing their own technology, and, in some cases, paying for their own marketing materials."
Actually, this description fits many professional services providers who "pay to play."
The classic example of that are those independent contractors who are tested and certified by Upwork. They go on to pay a percentage of the revenue from each assignment which had been listed on Upwork and for which Upwork handles the billing and collection of payment.
The negative with the virtual firm, points out Strom, is that the worker bees often become resentful of allowing 20 percent of the revenues they generate to go to the owners. Consequently, they could leave that arrangement and form their own firms.
The probability of that is high since they have proved to themselves that they can cut it in an entrepreneurial environment. That was exactly the same reason, pre-the on demand economy, that employers hesitated to hire the self-employed. The latter knew they could survive out there on their own. It was assumed they wouldn't "put up" with what wage slaves did.
The same occurs with contractors using Upwork. They might stop doing business through Upwork. They have learned how to present proposals, including bids, which get accepted. In addition, they could encourage the client obtained through Upwork to farm out assignments to them directly.
Virtual law firm owners might have to lower their take. Or they can provide more value.
Meanwhile the model is a gift from the gods for lawyers who can't tolerate the bureaucracy and politics of many traditional law firms. Working virtually also could be a solution for those - women and men - with care-taking responsibilities.
In addition, since their home is the primary location in which the work is done, the tax deductions can be amazing.
Among the virtual law firms are Culhane Meadows and FisherBroyles.
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