Law Firm Fees & Compensation: Value & Growth Dynamics

Every law firm is a business, and every business has three common elements: Get the work; do the work; and get paid. This publication shows you how these issues intersect and guides you through an integrated approach to growing your practice and your profits—while simultaneously adding value to your billings and services. The vital concepts in realizing new value include:

  • Engagement agreement essentials for lawyer and client
  • Easy-to-understand pricing methods that convey meaning to clients
  • Collection strategies that secure prompt payments
  • Compensation policies that serve the firm’s best interests

“There is a reason Ed Poll has enjoyed longstanding success as a coach and consultant to lawyers–because he is the real deal. His Law Firm Fees & Compensation gives detailed information on how to incorporate value billing concepts in a practical and ethical manner, while giving clients certainty and transparency. And don’t let the title fool you–the book works equally well for solos.” — Carolyn Elefant, Author of Solo by Choice: How to Be the Lawyer You Always Wanted to Be

“Ed Poll’s new report is a must-read for all lawyers. It covers everything from alternatives to the billable hour and clients’ perceptions of value, to associate compensation, fee-splitting, collections, and trust accounts–all in one easy-to-read volume. This report is right in line with Poll’s emphasis on the business aspects of practicing law and is a comprehensive reference that lawyers are sure to return to again and again.” — Allison C. Shields, Esq., LegalEase Consulting

“In his new book, Law Firm Fees & Compensation: Value & Growth Dynamics, Edward Poll is determined to force lawyers to act like the business owners and operators they are. In the most practical terms, this means that “Failure to communicate often means failure to get paid.” This book outlines the ways this warning translates into law firm management, both internally and with clients.” — Michael Brychel, Senior Legal Auditor at Stuart Maue.

“We hear plenty of talk about the demise of the billable hour, but little substantive discussion about what method ought to replace it. Sure, there’s mention of alternatives like flat fee billing, hybrids and “value billing,” you don’t always find much “there there.” Plus, many non-lawyer advocates of value billing fail to account for our professional obligation to ensure that our fees are reasonable. That’s one reason why I’ve always been a fan of Ed Poll – he’s actually familiar with the code of professional responsibility and when he gives advice on fees, you can be confident that it will pass muster. He’s also big on substance, and his recent book (which I previewed), Law Firm Fees and Compensation, offers a detailed discussion on setting fees using a variety of methodologies. Poll also discusses retainer agreements, trust accounts and collecting fees. In short, he fully discusses the only two questions that matter when it comes to fees: How much should I charge, and how do I get paid? While the book does include some material suitable for larger firms, at least 85 percent of it is relevant to solo and small firm practitioners – and offers information that I’ve not seen elsewhere in such detail. In short, it’s a recommended read.” — Carolyn Elefant,

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