Dealing with a Downturn in Your Law Firm due to COVID-19

Despite our best efforts to keep clients during the COVID-19 pandemic crisis, some law firms may experience a downturn and a loss of clients. Some may be out of work due to stay-at-home orders and unable to afford your services. Litigation, divorces and other court cases might be put on hold. And sadly, just from a realistic statistical standpoint, you may have some clients die from the disease.

Perhaps you’ve already experienced some sort of downturn in your firm. But that doesn’t mean your services aren’t needed. In fact, in certain areas, the pandemic as caused attorneys to be in much higher demand. What can you do to look for new opportunities and markets during this time?


Look for People Directly/Indirectly Affected by COVID-19

Believe it or not, the pandemic has created whole new arenas of legal issues to be addressed among many different segments of society—including some who may lie within your sphere of concentration. Some possible examples:

  • Employees whose bosses have broken the law (e.g., forcing them to come to work, firing them illegally, etc.)
  • People with pre-existing conditions who want to create or update a will in case they get sick
  • Landlord/tenant disputes over rent issues
  • Victims of financial institutions who are being predatory or violating pandemic rules, etc.
  • Increased number of defendants in domestic violence cases

It may require some creativity on your part (and not a little tact) to reach out to possible clients who could use your services at this time—but the needs are real. If you can reach them, you can help them.


Adjust Your Area of Concentration

Some lawyers may find a downturn in their particular concentration but notice an uptick in other areas for which they are also qualified. For example, you might be a personal injury attorney with a slew of cases on hold, but you also happen to be experienced in estate law. You may be able to focus attention temporarily on an increased need for estate planning while waiting for the quarantine to lift.


Look for Other Opportunities to Teach or Give Advice

Experts in many fields are finding creative ways to generate extra income online, from giving lessons to offering online workshops, etc. Some people might not be able to afford you directly, but they could spare a few dollars to hear you give a presentation on a Zoom conference call. You’ll obviously be limited in what constitutes “legal advice” in such situations, but the public definitely needs input from legal experts right now. Look within your circle of connections to see if you can find opportunities to offer expert opinions, conduct webinars or even do some coaching online.

Opportunities for income still exist in a COVID-19 world, even if the opportunities have shifted locations. Be creative and look for where the needs lie, then look for ways to meet those needs. If you need more specific help, we are still available remotely to provide needed support and community during this time. Call us at (888) 207-2869.

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