Solo practice: a pipe dream?

The blogger(s) over at “Big Debt Small Law” posted this hilarious rant against small law firm consultants holding out the promise of solo practice as the cure-all for what ails the poor law graduate who can’t find work and has way too much debt.

Bottom line: you will starve in solo practice.

Like most things this is true as is the opposite.  Statistically, you are probably more likely to starve than to be successful but that’s the same with any small business.  Most fail and some succeed.

But think about this: if your competition are the blogger(s) over at “Big Debt Small Law” you might have a fighting chance:

1.  Don’t let bitterness consume you.  The post is extremely funny and appears to be quite popular with others in the misery pool but how does all this bitterness help you to be a successful business person let alone a lawyer?

2.  This blogger(s) thinks that the world owes them a living.  That if you went to law school for three plus years, you should come out of it with a job having sent out a few resumes or set up a law office.  Just in case, they didn’t get the memo; we are in a deep doo-doo recession and everyone has to hustle.

3.  The only work out there for solos is document review, DUI defense and other “bottom-feeder” activity.  Really?  What if you develop a marketing plan for yourself that focuses on the type of law you would like to practice?  Maybe you would have to engage in document review and other “unsavory” practices to pay the bill.  It might take several years to build the practice you want for yourself but that’s called work.

4.  They think $595 is a rip-off?  First, given what they paid for law school, this is a pittance.  Next, I have no idea how good the program is.  BUT, whether you purchase a self-help book, a book on opening your own law practice, attend a CLE program on managing a small law office, you will spend money and you will have to take what you learn and apply it to your own life and business.  And guess what?  Being soaked and marinated in bitterness won’t make it any easier.

5.  I hope that the Big Debt, Small Law blogger(s) are shopping around a film script.  It would be a legal industry expose featuring lots of rants as in the film, “Network.”   They have real talent and the movie would be a laugh riot.  But if they have any hope of working as a lawyer, they might want to lay off the 5,000 word screeds and pick up the phone and reach out to their network.  Just saying.


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2 Responses to “Solo practice: a pipe dream?”

  1. Susan Cartier Liebel Says:

    Randy, I just want you to know I appreciate your even-handedness. I don’t ‘sell’ anything, nor do I propose solo practice as a panacea. It is simply not taught as an option at law school yet approximately half of all lawyers in private practice in this country are solos.

    We have more than 50 faculty teaching the nuts and bolts you wish you had learned in law school on numerous practice areas to give people a chance to go solo if it is a choice or if they feel they have no other option. It was in the making more than two years ago (after seeing and experiencing the negative attitude towards all these lawyers and limited avenues to pursue meaningful instruction of which I experienced personally) during a time when associates were getting $200,000 to start. It was simply serendipity that I opened when I did.

    Solo isn’t for everyone. But for those who want to go solo, we are another resource. It’s that simple.

    As for tuition, you have access to more than 300 individual classes and faculty even at $97 for one month. There are no catches, no upsells. If I could do it for free, I would. But there are costs associated with providing this service 🙂


    • Randy Wilson Says:

      Hi Susan,

      Thanks Susan for clarifying the tuition costs. As I wrote today about your blog, I have only a positive impression of who you are and what you offer. I don’t want to rush to your defense given that I have no knowledge of your actual program and I am sure that your satisfied participants are doing that for you!

      Randy Wilson

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