Networking is an essential component of starting a law firm, and can include establishing key relationships with other local legal professionals, Toronto personal injury lawyer Darryl Singer tells Lawyers Weekly.
In 2010, Singer, principal of Singer Barristers Professional Corporation, started his personal injury practice with just one assistant. In part, he credits his firm’s growth to strong relationships with paralegals.
“As a plaintiff’s lawyer I was doing tort cases, and in the first two or three years I had an association with a paralegal firm that kept the accident benefit work and sent me the tort work,” he says in the article.
“Their scope of practice is limited, so if they hit the ceiling and can’t do something they call me.”
Singer also says that he turned former personal injury competitors into referral sources.
“I’ve developed a network of a dozen of these firms…that won’t take a case if the claim isn’t worth ‘X’ dollars,” he explains, adding that some firms focus on higher-end tiers within their niche.
Now, Singer’s firm includes an associate lawyer, five paralegals and law clerks.
When it comes to hiring, Singer says his associate lawyer joined as an articling student and remained with the firm after she was called to the bar.
“I don’t use a recruiter,” he says. “It’s almost always connections through people I know.”