It’s National Small Business Week! You may be surprised to learn that more than half of Americans work for a small business. Smaller firms have an outsized impact on our economy and our lives: their contributions are critical to driving innovation, job creation, and more—especially in the legal space. Here are five small businesses that are making waves in our fast-moving industry:
CEO Tony Lai, COO Pieter Gunst, and CTO Daniel Lo lead a team that wants to demystify the process of finding a lawyer. This small business focuses on connecting consumers seeking legal help with lawyers specializing in the area they need. In addition to the marketplace of vetted lawyers and potential clients, their software also helps users decide if a lawyer is needed in a given situation. Though LawGives currently only serves the California market, we wouldn’t be surprised to see it expand to other states soon.
2. Ravel Law
This small company, led by Daniel Lewis and Nik Reed, wants to help attorneys make sense of “big data.” Their software analyzes past judgments and arguments to find information that could be relevant to a current case. Counsel can use these related examples to develop new points, to support their arguments, or to make projections about their upcoming case. This frees up time spent seeking information in favor of time on case strategy!
Founder Jacob Heller started this small business in response to a social justice problem: the cost to access legal expertise was prohibitive. The company’s legal research tool lets anyone take advantage of this knowledge. Their database of primary documents is six million strong, featuring federal and state cases, statutes, and regulations. Not only are the original documents available, but so are annotations from peers and links to related documents. Sounds like they’re headed from data democratization to data usefulness.
One area of opportunity in many firms is client communications, founders Matt Spiegel, Alex Dikowski, and Chris Schulte realized. This company addresses that need with its law practice management software, which serves as a central repository for each case. With contacts, calendars, documents, and time tracking all in one place, firms can manage the day-to-day of their business more efficiently.
Billing is often a dirty word which has connotations of complicated spreadsheets and unending confusion. Founder Patrik Outericky doesn’t believe this has to be the case. This small company’s e-billing software helps track spending, process new invoices, and catch billing errors. Implementation is also simpler than with legacy billing technology, living up to the nimbleness that small businesses can offer.
Small businesses like these are integral to increasing innovation in the legal industry. We are proud to be part of the community of small businesses working to make lawyers’ lives better. If you’re not already using some of these companies’ offerings, consider checking out what they’re doing differently. Happy National Small Business Week!