April 28, 2017 Practice Points

April To-Do List for Solo and Small Firms

By Elizabeth Miller
  1. Payroll. Do you have a payroll company that does your payroll? Confirm that they have filed your 941 return. Ask for a copy for your records.

  2. If you file your own 941 returns, prepare and file them and be sure to pay any taxes you owe. Interest and penalties add up quickly.

  3. If you pay real estate taxes in one installment, they are usually due by April 30th. Check where you live/work to make sure that you are timely.

  4. The 1st quarter billable hour reports can be generated. Review the reports and see how your timekeepers are doing. Assess where timekeepers are in terms of reaching their annual goals and discuss any changes that need to be made such as adjustments in procedures for capturing time or time management techniques.

  5. Review the expenses for the 1st quarter and compare it to the budget that you prepared for the current year. Did you have unexpected expenditures in the first three months of the year? If so, adjust your budget. Do you anticipate any expenditures for the rest of the year that were not expected when you prepared the budget? If so, make the adjustment to the budget. Try to keep the budget as accurate as possible.

  6. Now is a good time to plan marketing events for the firm. If you are considering a client event in the coming months, start planning (and budgeting) for it now.

  7. Update your firm brochure. If you have added (or lost) attorneys or partners have joined the firm, make sure the information is current.

  8. Prepare for Administrative Professionals Week (Day). This is usually during the last week of April. Any gesture of appreciation goes a long way to thank the staff that helps the firm succeed throughout the year. Don't over look them.

Elizabeth M. Miller is an independent/contract law firm administrator in Tampa, Florida.

Copyright © 2017, American Bar Association. All rights reserved. This information or any portion thereof may not be copied or disseminated in any form or by any means or downloaded or stored in an electronic database or retrieval system without the express written consent of the American Bar Association. The views expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the positions or policies of the American Bar Association, the Section of Litigation, this committee, or the employer(s) of the author(s).