FAQ for Attorneys

LAWYERS FOR AFFORDABLE JUSTICE FAQ

Start, grow, and sustain your solo practice as an LAJ participant. 

 

  • What is Lawyers for Affordable Justice?

Lawyers for Affordable Justice (LAJ) is an initiative by Boston College Law School, Boston University School of Law, and Northeastern University School of Law to help their graduates start successful solo practices that includes serving low to moderate income clients in the Boston area.

  • What are some of the financial benefits of joining LAJ (just a sampling)? (Note: subject to change)
Law Practice Essentials **
Cost On Your Own Cost as an LAJ Participant
Kenmore Square Office Space ~$6000/year minimal
Law Practice Management Software: Clio $708/year $0
Access to Lexis Nexis >$2100/year $0
Microsoft Office 365 $96/year $0
Massachusetts Bar Association Membership $75/year $0
Boston Bar Association Membership $130/year $0
Women’s Bar Association Membership $50-$250/year $0
Starting Out Solo Bar Association Membership $25 $0
Development of Business Plan Priceless $0
Mentor-Client Support Priceless $0
Legal Network Priceless $0

** Specific benefits  and accessibility length of time are subject to change

  • Why should I join Lawyers for Affordable Justice?

Starting a practice all on your own can be overwhelming. LAJ will provide you with the guidance you need to be confident getting started. LAJ will provide mentors with years of experience in solo practice, training workshops on initial business and marketing plans, continual one-on-one guidance, access to law practice management software, office space, and a community of other solo practitioners.

Whether your ultimate goal is to grow a sustainable private practice or gain valuable  experience to later join a private firm or corporation, LAJ can give you the experience and the training across a wide variety of specialty areas.

  • How long is the program?

LAJ’s program is a one year commitment. Throughout the year you will focus on developing a business and marketing plan for your practice at the same time that you build your clientele with the guidance of mentors and the community.  You will also be encouraged to look at growing your business with the help of specialists in technology and marketing.

  • How much will it cost?

LAJ charges a monthly fee that increases over the course of the program, as your practice matures. We estimate costs to be about $1,800, beginning at $50 per month and slowly increasing over the year. These estimates do not include the costs of malpractice insurance and securing a domain name.

  • What does the graduated payment scale look like?

Here’s the monthly breakdown for year 1 (in $): 50/50/100/100/100/100/100/200/200/200/300/300

 

  • What are the requirements for participation?

You must be licensed to practice law in Massachusetts and any other state where you are providing services. You must have proof of liability insurance and an IOLTA account. You must also submit an application to LAJ.

  • Do I get an office?

LAJ provides a four-room office space in Kenmore Square that will be used for work space, client meetings, workshops, networking events, and office equipment. The office manager will occupy one room and coordinate the use of the rest of the space. All LAJ participants will share the space.

  • Will LAJ help me find clients?

You will be expected to market yourself but LAJ will support you in those efforts. Your LAJ mentors will help you create a client referral plan.

  • What areas of law does LAJ support?

LAJ specifically supports four practice areas in 2016: Immigration Law, Small Business , Employment Law, and Landlord Tenant disputes. In 2017 we will be adding Family Law and Criminal Law.  We expect a significant portion of your practice to be in at least one of the six areas.

  • I have a solo practice already, am I eligible?

Yes, all graduates of Northeastern University, Boston College and Boston University law schools are eligible though preference is given to those of the current graduating class.  Please complete the application here.

  • I have a job but I am interested in starting my own practice, am I eligible?

Yes, all graduates of Northeastern University, Boston College and Boston University law schools are eligible though preference is given to those of the current graduating class.  Please complete the application here.