Start a Law Firm in Law School
“The Hessian could be a restaurant, a start-up, a clothing brand or more.”
—Designer Ben Pieratt
Pieratt has created what I’m calling a “brand in a box.”
It’s a complete brand identity, as Tim Nudd writes for AdWeek, a business Pieratt named the Hessian. For a cool $18,000, you get pretty much everything you need (at least as far as branding is concerned), all before you’ve even got a product or service to sell.
It sounds quite foolhardy. It’s a lot like putting the cart before the horse.
But this Hessian brand-in-a-box business got me thinking. Why couldn’t you, an aspiring law student turned lawyer-entrepreneur, start a law firm before you’ve even graduated from law school?
3 Assumptions for the Ultimate Gunner
In order for this to work, we’ve got to make a few assumptions:
- You’re not risk-averse. Think about it: You don’t have a J.D. You might not pass the bar. But if there’s any time in your future lawyer’s life when you’re least risk-averse, it’s now, in law school.
- You’ve got to know why you went to law school in the first place. Read Tucker Max’s entertaining diatribe (why you should not go to law school). You’ve got to know in your gut that you want to be a lawyer and that you want to run your own firm.
- You’ll follow the rules. Do not actively market your legal services and engage in the unauthorized practice of law. Graduate from law school first. Get your J.D. Pass the bar in your jurisdiction and get your license.
Assuming these three things, what’s to stop you from “starting” a firm?
This is also known as getting your ducks in a row.
How to Get Your Ducks in a Row
The Hessian is your brand served on a silver platter.
According to Nudd’s AdWeek post, it includes:
- Twitter account
- Tumblr account
- 20+ logo and other designs
- 10+ T-shirt designs
- 8 repeating patterns
- 1 website theme
- 1 app user interface theme
- 5 app icons
- Brand book w/ guiding principles
- 30 hours custom design time
You’ve got to pay for that silver platter, but already you’ve got more than a lot of practicing lawyers, and you’re just a law student.
Of course, marketing and branding is not everything. You won’t need 10-plus T-shirt designs, but you will need a decent computer, a scanner like the Fujitsu ScanSnap to cut down on clutter and keep yourself organized, and plenty of moxie.
Check out Sam’s popular post on how to start a law firm for under $3,000.
Is this Doable?
I say yes.
Get everything—your name, your brand, website, blog, computer, scanner—ready for the launch date, i.e. the day your license to practice law arrives in the mail.
What’s to stop you?
If you want to be a lawyer-entrepreneur, start now. Start in law school.