Here’s a Best Practices Checklist

It covers everything from client intake to trust accounts.

When it comes to managing a law office, there are so many moving parts – from team-building to time billing – that it’s hard to know where to start.

That’s why this “best practices” checklist from the Massachusetts Law Office Management Assistance Program (Mass LOMAP) is so useful.

It breaks down the practice of law into its essential components: managing, marketing, technology, etc. And then it provides a self-audit so lawyers can evaluate how they’re doing in each category.

A few of the considerations are specific to Massachusetts, but most are applicable to every law firm.

“The purpose of this checklist is to help you identify areas to implement best practices in your law firm,” says the introduction to the checklist. “Review all of the questions and note any areas you would like to discuss more thoroughly with a law practice advisor. We recommend that you discuss answers with all staff in the office to ensure that your actual office procedures are documented.”

Click here to download a copy of the Mass LOMAP Best Practices checklist.

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Best Practices Checklist

Following are the topics covered in the Mass LOMAP Best Practices Checklist. Each comes with a list of self-audit questions. We’ve included the questions for the first topic only.

  • CLIENT INTAKE AND ENGAGEMENT
    • Do you use an intake form to collect important information before engaging in representation?
    • At the onset of representation, do you ask the client how they want to be kept informed, note that information in the client file, and communicate those preferences to your staff?
    • At the onset of representation, do you establish communication guidelines?
    • At the onset of representation, do you discuss expectations of both the client and attorney?
    • At the onset of representation, do you discuss fees and billing procedures?
    • At the onset of representation, do you introduce all team members to the client?
  • FEE AGREEMENTS
  • COMMUNICATIONS
  • CONFLICTS OF INTEREST
  • CONFIDENTIALITY
  • DOCKET/CALENDARING
  • RECORDS MANAGEMENT
  • FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT, BILLING, and TIMEKEEPING
  • TRUST PROPERTY AND TRUST ACCOUNTS
  • TECHNOLOGY
  • MARKETING and BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT
  • MARKETING ETHICS
  • STAFF MANAGEMENT
  • PROFESSIONAL PRACTICE AND PLANNING
  • MANAGING YOUR TIME, PROJECTS, and TASKS
  • MANAGING YOURSELF and YOUR CAREER

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