www.advocatedaily.com that is talking about the need for lawyers to change the way they are billing their clients. Click here to read the article. Traditionally, lawyers have billed their clients by the hour. This has sometimes meant unexpectedly high bills for clients, uncertainty for clients about how much they'll have to pay, and a reputation for lawyers of being so expensive that regular people can't afford them.
The article suggests that clients might prefer flat-fee billing and urges lawyers to consider making this change. It's a real shift in thinking, but to me it makes sense. Consumers of all goods and services want to know what something is going to cost, and that includes legal services. Times have changed and lawyers have to change as well to be more responsive to client needs.
I'm pleased to say that at my firm we have embraced this change. The billable hour is not used here, and we offer a menu of services and flat fees for our customers. So far the response has been unanimously positive. We have had great feedback from our clients, the people who have come to our in-office events, and people in the community in general.
I hope that more law firms will try this more client-focused approach.