We’re halfway through Bankruptcy Week! The third day of our virtual bankruptcy conference on Livestorm covered business-related topics, like law firm strategy and working with a virtual paralegal.
Here’s everything that happened on day three.
Session 1: Business Bankruptcies with Tara Salinas
Tara Salinas is the Founder and Managing Attorney at Salinas Law Group LLC, in operation since 2003. Tara handles student loan cases in addition to consumer Chapter 7 and 13 bankruptcy cases. She regularly speaks at bankruptcy programs both locally and around the globe.
In her session, Tara walked legal professionals through the ins and outs of business bankruptcies, including Chapter 11 and 7 cases. These cases are especially important now as more small businesses are closing their doors.
What was covered:
- 52% of all small businesses expect to be out of businesses within the next 6 months due to COVID-19. An additional 14% are uncertain about what will happen to their business.
- An explanation of the most common business bankruptcy case types, including the advantages and disadvantages for businesses.
- Components every attorney should consider when taking on a new business bankruptcy case: understanding who the parties are, if the business is viable, is it possible to wind down the business without bankruptcy, and if personal credit cards were used to fund the business.
- Temporary changes to the bankruptcy code under the CARES Act: stimulus payments and possible unemployment stimulus are excluded from the means test, and increased the debt limit for CH 11 Sub V cases, and more.
Mandy Ballinger heads operations and development at NextChapter. She joined the company with seven years of paralegal experience under her belt, experiences that sparked her passion for helping legal clients.
Mandy’s session covered how virtual paralegals can help law firms with a lot of the legal work to streamline their practice. Guest speakers included NextChapter virtual paralegals Robyn Hickey and Jean Springer.
What was covered:
- A 5-minute product pitch with Ruby, is a service that offers live, virtual receptionists to make sure that no call goes unanswered.
- Benefits of working with a virtual paralegal: save money, increase efficiency, and improve client relations.
- Contract virtual paralegals cost on average $54k a year, vs $90k per year for an in-house paralegal.
- What virtual BK paralegals do: collect information, prepare the bankruptcy forms, flag issues, submit the petition to the attorney for review, and anything else you need help with.
- Best practices for working with a virtual paralegal: communication is key, setting expectations early on, and more.
- More information about Paralegal as a Service and how you can work with a NextChapter paralegal. Schedule a paralegal set-up call here: https://calendly.com/virtual-paralegal/hire-a-paralegal?month=2020-05
Stephanie Everett is President at Lawyerist and runs the Lawyerist Lab. She’s a speaker, author, and experienced attorney who co-founded her own firm which now employs a team of 20. She also opened a consulting practice to help other lawyers.
Stephanie gave a talk on law firm business strategy, helping practices of all sizes learn how to set goals and track important metrics.
What was covered:
- Hear from one of our premium sponsors, LawClerk, who helps attorneys with a network of freelance lawyers. You can post projects and find a network of freelancers who are able to help for a fee.
- How to create a long term, well-documented, clear strategy for your firm's future: look at where you want to go, plan actionable steps to get there and create due dates for these action items.
- It is easy to get overwhelmed by a long to-do list, but breaking tasks down and prioritizing tasks is crucial to balancing what needs to be done.
- KPIs help you make data-driven decisions and propel your business forward. They should be constantly adjusted as you learn and grow.
Day four is coming up with the following sessions:
Thursday, May 14
Session 2: Bifurcated Bankruptcies with Matt Hartley at 12PM ET
Session 3: Marketing Your Law Firm with Jim Christy at 3PM ET
Session 4: Ask the Expert with Ron Drescher at 5PM ET
If you’re just able to tune in, there’s still time to register for free to attend the last couple of days of Bankruptcy Week!