Why I Use Ruby as my Virtual Receptionist

I’ve written about Ruby Receptionist quite a bit. They handle the overflow calls for my law firm.

Some people might say that voicemail is good enough for their business. But here’s why I pay Ruby instead of letting calls go to voicemail: people don’t leave voicemail messages.

Unfortunately, Ruby doesn’t answer my phones 24/7. They’re people, so they do need breaks. Today (Monday, December 26th), for instance, they were closed for Christmas. When Ruby isn’t open, my calls do roll to voicemail.

Today I received NINE calls from unique numbers that haven’t called my office before. Guess how many of …

Lawyer Pokes the Bear Over Disclaimers

Richmond lawyer Horace Hunter is fighting the Virginia State Bar on the issue of website disclaimers. Unfortunately, I’ll bet he’s going to lose. (Thanks to Carolyn Elefant for pointing the story out!)

According to a Washington Post article, the Bar has taken issue with the lawyer’s lack of a disclaimer on his website. It sounds like Horace is claiming the Bar is trampling his First Amendment rights.

Disclaimers are clearly required by Rule 7.2(a) under several circumstances. It’s not a gray area, and it’s not a best practice. It’s a black-and-white rule.

Disclaimers are required in three instances: endorsements by …

Watch out for Reciprocal Social Media Endorsements

I’ve said before that reciprocal endorsements might be a problem in Virginia under Rule 7.2(c):

A lawyer shall not give anything of value to a person for recommending the lawyer’s services except that a lawyer may…

(exceptions are for advertising costs, non-profit lawyer referral services, and buying a law practice)

I decided to contact our ethics folks to see if I was crazy. Here’s my email to them:

Hi guys,

With the rise of Facebook, and now Google’s “+1”, there’s a temptation for attorneys to ask each other to “Like” (Facebook) or “+1” (Google) our websites. In return, the attorney says they’ll reciprocate.

Is it …

A Day in Andrew’s Practice

Have you ever looked back at a day and wondered what you actually did? I’ve had a crazily busy day today, so I decided to figure out where my 13 hours of work went.

Here’s my day:

49 email conversations

44 phone calls

4 hours and 14 minutes on the phone

13 new potential clients

4 newly hired clients

1 in-person client meeting

Now it’s bed time.

Virtual Receptionist Ruby Does it Again!

Some companies have an impressive understanding of client service and relations. Ruby Receptionists is one of them. They’re my awesome virtual receptionist.

Previously I’ve written about their cool welcome mug and their welcome back cake. Today’s post is to praise them for helping out another solo.

In a nutshell, a colleague’s mother is in the hospital (please pray for her). He’s a solo attorney, so the emotional toll due to a situation like this will also take a toll on his practice.

A good friend of mine (Deb Matthews) decided to see if Ruby could help out (she’s a …

Referral Fees – To Pay or Not to Pay?

As the attorneys out there know, we have particular rules about sharing fees with people who aren’t attorneys. It’s one HUGE area that has surprised me in my young legal career.

Here’s my take: referrals fees are allowed in Virginia; I receive them, and I’m happy to pay them.

That single sentence may cause a lot of tension, but I’ll back it up.

Virginia allows referral fees

Virginia used to prohibit referral fees. If lawyers shared fees, they had to be taking on responsibility for the matter. You could have a co-counsel relationship and split the fee, but you couldn’t simply pay a fee …

My Simple Client Fee Agreement

One question that comes up a lot for attorneys is: What to put in the client fee agreement?

I’ve worked hard to make mine simple, not intimidating, and in plain English. I know it doesn’t cover every imaginable possibility, but it’s worked great so far in my practice. It has evolved a bit over time, and I hope to continue improving it.

Here’s what I use:

Client Plan
John Doe

This is our agreement that outlines the work I will do for you, the costs involved, and our relationship together. In order to hire me as your attorney, you need to complete two steps as …

Yodle Lied to Me – My Rating: F

Update – 05/22/12 – See the update at the bottom of the post (hint: they still suck).

These sales guys drive me batty.

My assistant just answered the phone. She told me that a colleague was calling from the Canon Law Group to talk about DUIs. She gave me the guy’s name, which I can’t remember.

I didn’t recognize the name or the firm, but I figured it was an attorney who might have a question or want to bounce something off me. I’m always open to that.

I get on the phone, and the guy cryptically starts talking about the work he’s doing …

Ruby Receptionist Rocks – My Virtual Receptionist

I first wrote about Ruby Receptionist in March of this year. I had just signed up for a free trial, and I was excited to begin using my new virtual receptionist for my solo law firm. (Here is my original post about Ruby Receptionist.)

I’ve now been with Ruby for five months. I regularly get questions from people who are looking to try out their service. So here’s an update.

I love Ruby!

In case there’s any doubt, I’m a satisfied Ruby client. They do a great job at handling my calls. They’re an asset to my law practice, and I …

Learn How to Build a Solo Law Practice

Lawyers around the world rejoiced today as Solo Practice University (SPU) announced its tuition. On March 20th, “the practice of law school” will open its doors to a flood of solo (and hopefully solo) practitioners. Are you enrolling?

What is Solo Practice University?

In a nutshell, it’s an online university where law students and lawyers can learn a wide variety of topics related to running a successful solo law practice. There are courses, faculty, discussion groups, blogs, videos, comments, and lots more!

You might think of SPU like an educational Facebook for solo lawyers (and law students). It’s a combination …

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  • About Andrew Flusche

    Lawyer, bicyclist, husband.
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