Is Practical Law Worth It?
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5. Get the practical right. I know that in this blog, I sound like a broken record when I say that the best resource an in-house lawyer can get is practical law.  This is especially true if you are a single in-house lawyer or if you are part of a small team. Simply put, practical law can give you the advice, research, forms, checklists, “what is the market,” sample guidelines, practice notes, global coverage, toolkits, etc. you need. All in an incredibly “convenient” and helpful way. Literally everything you need to answer almost any legal question or request that is put to you by the company. However, it`s not free, so you`ll have to pay for an annual subscription (but I`d fight for that if you come on board). If you`re not using it yet, my suggestion is to sign up for a free trial and get a demo.
If practical law is not in your budget, all is not lost. There are several free resources that can provide a lot of useful information for free (as well as low-cost tools). Here are some of them:
- Provide quick and accurate answers and minimize risk to your growing business. Stay on top of changing market demands while increasing business efficiency. With resources created by lawyers experienced in practical law, you can ensure your firm has the tools to quickly upgrade and serve your clients.
- Reduce outpatient expenses by expanding your in-house expertise. Simply put, if there is something that would facilitate quick updating on a particular area of law, practical law has probably done so. For the busy government lawyer who is supposed to be a jack-of-all-trades, there is no more effective way to get the knowledge you need in a convenient place so that you can approach your work safely and efficiently, even if you are in uncharted territory. Watch this free on-demand webinar and learn how practical law can help you do more with less.
increasing efficiency and improving response time with practical law Practical law® is the source of reliable and easily accessible standard documents, practice notes, checklists, legal updates, guidance and more. It helps companies increase productivity, increase efficiency, and improve response time, so you can add more value to your customers.
Thousands of lawyers and publishers have curated guides, forms and reference templates, checklists, and other resources to help you practice more effectively. Streamline your workflow with full access to annotated standard documents and clauses, practice notes, checklists, toolkits, questions and answers, and legal updates.
- Reduce expenses with external consultants and keep more work in-house. Meet the current demand for a more efficient practice by accessing carefully maintained resources and the latest analysis of current market trends. Nice reading and lots of useful information, as usual. Thank you for not leaving us, the only lawyers in the department, alone. I look forward to the next articles!
- Find your answers even faster with WestSearch Plus, the most powerful legal search engine Hi Tommy – contact me by email. [email protected] Thank you!
- Access expert content in 16 key areas, including work and employment, contracts, municipal law, real estate, litigation, intellectual property and more Achieve more in less time with concise practice guides written by experts. Great Kirstie stuff! If you get the chance, find the linkedIn article on the blog and add that information as a comment.
Really useful points
Get clear and concise explanations about current law and practice to help you quickly and safely familiarize yourself with new issues.
- Save time by comparing agreements, transactions, quotes and more practical law provides these tools. When it comes to acquiring legal know-how in an emergency, nothing beats practical law. Think of it as your repository of exercise guides that you can digest quickly. If Westlaw is your favorite place to dive deep and become an expert, Practical Law is its useful counterpart and your starting point to get solid experience on new issues or topics. Simply put, practical law makes your life easier when you`re in uncharted territory.
- Get valuable support from experienced lawyer-writers in a specific practice area One of the biggest challenges as a government lawyer is being trapped in a constant zone of discomfort.
If you are constantly asked to tackle new areas of law, you will not have the chance to build the knowledge base necessary to answer questions immediately.
Such a level of mastery is a luxury that only specialists can enjoy. As ultimate generalists, government lawyers must find other ways to fill the ever-changing knowledge gaps in the most effective way.  For full disclosure, I am writing a column for Thomson Reuters (the owner of Practical Law). However, I am in no way paid – or asked – to support the product
this is just my own opinion as a long-time user
- Download your briefing to find a very relevant authority that might have missed the traditional search with Quick Check Hi Lucy – thank you for reading and taking the time to leave a comment! Sincerely, Sterling. 2.
Intestinal control. Before you say “yes” to becoming a senior general counsel, you need to stop for a belly check. Is this really what you want to do with your career? It takes a special type of lawyer to be the only in-house lawyer in a company. First of all, I wouldn`t take such a job unless I have at least four years of experience (and more is definitely better). Second, are you willing to give up the benefits and “practical” lifestyle of working in a law firm or large in-house department? In this new job, you need to be almost completely self-sufficient and willing to work long hours to make sure everything is done. You may no longer have an office with a door or even a cabin. More likely, you`re sitting at a long table with other employees, and your rank as general counsel doesn`t mean much. Third, be prepared to walk past the pants seat when making legal decisions. You have to become the ultimate generalist – a legal Swiss Army knife. You usually won`t have time to go see an outside lawyer (if that`s an option), nor will you be able to spend hours researching the issue. Every day, you make important decisions with imperfect information in areas of law where you have little or no experience.
Do you feel comfortable with that?
Fourth, be prepared to take and familiarize yourself with more risks than you`ve ever experienced in your legal career. Their orientation quickly becomes more “business” than “legal” most of the time. You need to learn how to quickly analyze risks and describe options for the business and ultimately live with what the company decides. This requires a strong stomach. Finally, there`s a good chance your pay will be low in terms of salary and bonuses with a bit of early fairness, so when the company takes off, you`ll be very well rewarded. Can you make this kind of initial financial sacrifice and focus on the “if” ?. . .
- Get clear explanations about current legislation and practice.
- Save time in creating completed contracts and standard documents.
- Get international advice with Global Guides and Cross-Border Topics I loved being a single in-house lawyer and thought the model should be available for small businesses that couldn`t afford an experienced full-time lawyer or didn`t need one full-time. So I now run a law firm where our team of experienced in-house lawyers works as the only part-time in-house lawyer (usually between 1 and 6 days a month) – the General Counsel.
Hi Matthew – can you send me your email address? I think I can help you. [email protected] Rgds Instantly access up-to-date documents relevant to your customer`s problem and stop wasting time searching for resources or updating your own old materials.
- Increase your confidence and minimize risk to your clients There are many reasons why so many small law firms use practical legal expertise. Here are the top 10:
- Have a better understanding of the time and cost of a deal with access to detailed maps of the material. 1.
Is Practical Law Worth It ? Clarify your role. The first thing you need to do before taking on the role of a lone lawyer is to clarify exactly what your role will be. Will you need to be part of the management team and be a trusted advisor to management and the board of directors, or will you simply be a writer whose job is exclusively to draft contracts and manage external consultants? While it`s probably a combination of both, be sure to define your role, tasks, and expectations before you take the job.
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