Get Paid Quicker with Lawyer Payment Plans
Clients care about affordability, and lawyer payment plans prioritize just that. In the 2020 Legal Trends Report, consumers ranked affordability factors—including payment plans—as the most important determinant (aside from positive reviews) for lawyer hireability.
When lawyers offer payment plans—for example, through online payments in Clio Manage—clients can pay on a schedule that works for them. It takes the stress out of the payment process, resulting in faster-paid bills.
How lawyers win by embracing payment plans
Continuously playing phone tag and following up with clients for payments eat up lawyers’ hours. Not to mention missing monthly revenue targets due to unpaid bills and other setbacks stemming from scant payment structures. By introducing and communicating payment plans which center around the client and their experience, law firms can avoid chasing clients for bill payments.
According to the 2020 Legal Trends Report, 72% of consumers prefer to pay their legal fees via a payment plan. Payment plans also make legal services more affordable to clients who would otherwise be unable to pay. If a client can’t pay, they either won’t seek legal services or won’t pay their bill. This holdup means firms leave money on the table and don’t get to help as many clients as they otherwise could. Lawyers have just as much to gain from payment plans as their clients do.
How to start implementing payment plans at your law firm
Ask your clients about what works best for them. Chances are, when clients sit down with you, their adrenaline is high, and stress is looming. A client could hastily agree to pay an amount of money that isn’t possible in one transaction. And yes, this will most certainly hurt your bottom line if you’re planning operations around securing this revenue. One alternative is to ask questions. Find out a little bit more about your client and their financial situation. Encouraging stress-free payments of $100 a month is better for your business than the alternative–your team spends hours a week chasing substantial unpaid invoices with little knowledge of when checks will clear.
Offer payment plans that work for your firm. If your alternative payment plans don’t cover monthly costs, suddenly, your clients are without legal help. For a payment plan to work, it has to be mutually beneficial. Understanding your cash flow and knowing what number you need to bring in every month to keep business going is a good place to start. If possible, creating a law firm budget and getting your finances organized before introducing payment plans will benefit you in the long run.
Understanding the benefits of payment plans and thinking critically about how they might work at your firm is half the battle. Now, you can learn more about setting up payment plans.