January 31, 2014

From Graduate to Solo: Hit the Ground Running

Julie K. Fowler

I opened my law practice right after graduating law school. I went from kindergarten to law school without a break and then immediately took the bar exam following graduation. Upon passing the bar I gave myself three months to find a job. I determined that if I did not find a job in that period, I would open my own law practice. I didn’t have a business plan, money saved, or anything I would need to start a law practice. When no job opportunity materialized in the three months allotted, I opened my law practice by walking into my local city hall and purchasing a business license. Thirteen years later I am still in business as a solo attorney.

If you are considering opening your own solo practice straight out of law school, keep the following three things in mind: (1) Opening a practice is not as scary or as difficult as you think. (2) Solo practice is more rewarding than you can imagine. (3) You are more qualified to practice law than you give yourself credit for. You studied in law school for three years and then passed the bar exam. You are smart, capable, and competent. Do you realize that? Do you accept the truth of that statement? You should. You can do this!

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