What is a freelance attorney?

As the legal profession evolves to meet the demands of the marketplace, the freelance attorney has emerged, riding on the cutting edge of change.  Although “freelance” is a term easily understood in connection with other occupations, there seems to be confusion when pairing “freelance” and “attorney” together.  So what is a freelance attorney anyway?  A freelance attorney is an independent contractor who is hired by other attorneys to handle legal work on a temporary contract project basis.  Simply put, freelance attorneys are in the business of helping other attorneys. Some of the confusion stems from the historical understanding of a contract attorney.  Generally, a contract attorney is an attorney who is employed by an agency to review documents for a low hourly wage.  In contrast, a freelance attorney is a skilled and experienced attorney who can independently research legal issues, draft briefs, manage discovery, or even consult on litigation strategy.  Freelance attorneys focus on a niche practice area and offer their expertise to other attorneys needing help with a large case, transaction, appeal, or some other unique project.  The relationship between the hiring attorney and the freelance attorney is symbiotic and premised on flexibility. The hiring attorney uses the services of the freelance attorney only when needed to handle additional business or difficult projects without hiring another full time employee. In turn, the freelance attorney provides the necessary support and quality end product while enjoying flexibility in scheduling and working hours. A freelance attorney is not the same as a solo practitioner.  While an attorney with a solo practice represents direct clients, the clients of a freelance attorney are law firms, in-house counsel, and solo practitioners themselves.  A freelance attorney provides work product that the hiring attorney uses as part of his or her representation of the direct client.  Hiring attorneys, not freelance attorneys, are ultimately responsible for the...

Welcome to MFAN

Thank you for visiting the blog for the Minnesota Freelance Attorney Network. We are a group of attorneys who assist other practicing attorneys with tasks on a project or contract basis. Here, we will be answering questions about freelance practice and addressing the variety of ways in which freelance attorneys can assist the legal community. Please refer to our About page to learn more about our group, check back often for new articles, and Contact Us if you have a question that you would like to see addressed. We appreciate your interest and support! Effective June 1st 2016, Lynn Walters is no longer accepting assignments as a freelance attorney. Lynn’s new company, Blackstock Walters, LLC, offers litigation support services such as legal research, motion preparation, and document summaries on a project basis. MFAN Bio | Email | Web | LinkedIn | MFAN...

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