Paralegal support services afford not only more time for focusing on the more complex aspects of a case, they also provide a way to offer clients lower legal fees.
Paralegal support minimizes clients’ legal fees
How do you reduce your clients’ legal fees? Under the supervision and direction of an attorney, paralegals can perform any task their attorney does, excepting those that constitute UPL (see, Paralegal Do’s and Don’ts: What can (and can’t) a paralegal do for you). Yet, the paralegal billing rate is substantially lower than the attorney’s billing rate. Say, for the sake of simplicity, you bill at $200 per hour and have a paralegal billing rate of $100 per hour. The more you delegate to your paralegal, the lower your clients’ legal fees. Depending on actual billing rates, attorneys can essentially offer the same services to their clients for almost half the price. Clients like that. Many of today’s clients understand the value paralegals offer and specifically request that a paralegal be assigned to their case.
Billing at the paralegal instead of the attorney’s rate doesn’t equate to a loss of income. On the contrary. Delegating work to a paralegal increases hourly attainable income by the amount of your paralegal billing rate. You have only so many hours in a day to work and bill time; when you have a paralegal working beside you, you increase your practice’s billable hours. Using the example above, when a paralegal is added, the practice is now capable of producing $300 instead of $200 per hour in income. Delegating work to a paralegal frees you up to work on other matters, allowing you to take on or produce twice the amount of work product you can produce without a paralegal. It frees up your time for client development. It helps you manage the excessive caseload that already exists. All while enabling you to produce additional income for your practice.
Paralegal support services minimize clients’ legal fees and maximize your bottom line
Paralegal support services help minimize client fees and also help minimize overhead and maximize your bottom line. Besides minimizing office space, equipment, and employment-related expenses (paralegal support services are independent companies, not employees), your bottom-line will improve instantly in other ways, too.
How? Here’s the quick and easy: The difference between your paralegal billing rate and the rate you pay for paralegal support services is an immediate profit for your practice. For example, if your paralegal billing rate is $100 per hour and your paralegal support service only charges $50 an hour, the difference between what you pay and what you recharge your clients ($50) is an immediate profit for your practice. Keep in mind, this is also additional time your practice can bill out and it’s all free of overhead and employment costs.
Paralegals and paralegal support services bring so much value to attorneys, law firms, corporations, agencies, their clients and the legal field as a whole; it’s both impressive and exciting. The benefits abound, but can be hard to visualize, especially when assessing cost-benefits. To bring it all together, review the cost-analysis posted here. See just how much your clients benefit. Even with modest numbers, the figures are impressive. What do you think?