Thinking About Thinking
Billable Hour Cliff Notes

Virtual Paralegal/Clerk Update

I have hired two virtual law clerks and one virtual paralegal.  These folks work as independent contractors on a project and task basis.  There was much interest in this concept at LexThink so I thought I would create a separate category for the topic and provide an update.

So far, the program is going very well in the following areas: 

Task Based Projects & Budgets:  Every assignment to a virtual employee is narrowly defined, documented and budgeted.  Unlike traditional firms which assign tasks to paralegal and clerks which are open ended and designed to create billable work, these tasks are designed to accomplish the opposite.  We reduce billable work by posing narrow questions and asking for narrow answers and solutions to narrow problems.  Each task allots so many hours of work to completion.  If the worker needs more hours, they must be approved.  All incentives push hard towards efficiency and answers.

Overflow Capacity: These virtual workers provide much needed overflow capacity for my practice.  I still have not sent out announcements for my new firm since I can barely handle the current workload.  The virtual program will create the capacity for me to deal with the inevitable increase in work that those announcements will generate.

Alternative Billing:  By pushing easier tasks down to lower billing workers, I am in a position to deliver much more bang for the buck.  On my flat fee cases, I increase my margins by not doing the work myself (and assuming I am working on another case while the virtual employees performs a task I would have otherwise performed).  On my value billing (hourly) cases, I push tasks down to the appropriate billing level which saves the client fees.

Profit Center:  As every non-solo knows, profits are tough when there is only one set of hands doing the lifting.  Each project or task assigned to a virtual worker results in profits for the firm.  Working properly, everyone wins.  The client pays lower fees.  The firm profits by assigning tasks to the lowest appropriate billing level.  The virtual employee wins by having flex hours and self-managed projects.  I am able to pay the virtual worker more since I don't have to provide office space, etc.


Grant Griffiths

I have been using a virtual parelegal for just over a year now. Works great. I send her ditigal transcription to do and she sends it back to me via email. We also exchange everything via email. I would recommend it to any solo.


Where and how do you find these virtual workers? How do you evaluate them? What are the confidentiality and conflict screens you use? I'm very interested in this concept, but don't understand the specifics very well.

I was a virtual law clerk to several attorneys. It was a lot of fun. You find one by posting a request on your blog.

Rob Hyndman

Here is another great reason to establish yourself virtually:


Barbara Cloud

I am a paralegal with 10 years experience and would love to work from home as a virtual assistant.

Please contact me if you're interested in hiring a virtual assistant. My e-mail address is

Jennifer Bassett

It's fantastic that the word about virtual and indepedent paralegals is spreading. I am an independent paralegal and have greatly enjoyed working from home.

I think there are many benefits for the lawyer and/or firm and the paralegal, even if the arrangement is per project or temporary.

Please email me or visit my website if you would like more information. I would be happy to explain my services in depth with anyone interested.

Della A. Beaver

I have three clients that I contract with to provide virtual paralegal services. It works well for both parties.

Denise Annunciata

Virtual Paralegal Services ( provides on-demand paralegal services to solo practitioners, small firms and in-house legal departments. We deliver services of highly skilled paralegal assistance typically only available to lawyers at large firms. We'd love to help you Turbo Charge Your Practice!

Judith Johnson

I am so glad to hear that the Virtual Paralegal practice is making such an impact. I am a paralegal with over 14 years of paralegal/legal assistant experience and am looking to start my own business from home. Please contact me if you can utilize the services of a hard-working paralegal.
You can call me at 813-579-7640 or contact me at You can also check out my website at for further details.

Rosanna Tussey

For small firms and solo practicioners especially, teaming with a Virtual Paralegal can be the key to really growing your practice. I always say a good Virtual Paralegal ends up "paying for themselves" as their support will enable the attorney to take on a more substantial case load, thus generating more revenue for the practice. Anyone seeking more information on how to team with a Virtual Paralegal can contact me by email at

Clare Mumba

I am a Paralegal Student looking to gain experience in research using lexis and internet research. I would like to give a try at being a vitual legal assistant/paralegal.Any one willing to give me a chance, please e-mail me with assignments at


Hello. I am a litigation paralegal with 8 years worth of experience. I have extensive experience in drafting documents, reviewing discovery both online and in paper form, organizing large, document intensive cases, and handling trial preparation, among many other tasks. I have a working knowledge of electronic discovery and online document programs such as Concordance, Summation, and iConect. I'm very interested in performing freelance and virtual paralegal work. Please kindly contact me via email if you are interested in my services. Thank you!


Hello. I am a litigation paralegal with 8 years worth of experience. I have extensive experience in drafting documents, reviewing discovery both online and in paper form, organizing large, document intensive cases, and handling trial preparation, among many other tasks. I have a working knowledge of electronic discovery and online document programs such as Concordance, Summation, and iConect. I'm very interested in performing freelance and virtual paralegal work. Please kindly contact me via email at if you are interested in my services. Thank you!


Dear Blogger,

Thank you for posting about your experience with freelance and virtual paralegals. It's great to see attorneys give thumbs up to the freelance and virtual paralegal world!

Paralegal business owners are growing in numbers. It's my hope that more attorneys listen to words of wisdom, such as yours.

Speaking as a paralegal business owner, I do believe we can continue to cut your overhead, provide quality work, and boost your revenue.

As a growing industry, attorneys do need to learn how to select the right freelance paralegal for them. Good news JANUARY 8, 2008, is going to be a ground breaking date for both freelance paralegals and those looking to retain them!! Please mark your calendars.

Until January 8, 2008 - if you (paralegal or attorney) has a specific question about how to become, how to retain, how to trust a freelance/ virtual paralegal, or require an overview of the process simply contact me. I'll be happy to discuss the process, and guide you in the right direction.

Best Regards,

Leslie R. Williams

RJ: Thanks for your positive comments concerning the utilization of virtual paralegals. I worked for a northern Florida attorney while living in central Florida. It was not only a very efficient way to work but much more relaxing.

Kudos to you for making the transition from the "norm" to working virtually!

Susan Wysocki

I am a virtual paralegal with 17 years of legal experience mostly in Corporate law. My company name is "Paralegal Outsourcing LLC". Legal outsourcing is such a growing field and, with my outstanding professional experience, I look forward to a successful career. Please feel free to contact me at


Hello, I am a Paralegal who currently works fulltime for a personal injury law firm. I have experience in various forms of law, including matrimonial and some corporate. I would love to obtain a position to work from home. If you are in the need for a Virtual Paralegal, please contact me for my resume and with your firm name and website.


Hi, I am a litigation paralegal who currently graduated with MBA. I have experience in cases such as product liability , securities, and general litigation. Here are some of my responsibilities:
-Coordinated large document production, both paper and electronic including document collection, storage and maintenance.
-Prepared and maintained master indexes, and chronologies.
-Handled all aspects of depositions, exhibits, and witnesses.
-Coordinated, retrieved, and managed materials to/from client, co-counsel and opposing counsel.
-Researched and retrieved documents in the client database system.
-Uploaded and coded deposition materials into Concordance and Summation.
-Assisted attorneys with deposition preparation by summarizing documents etc.
I have worked in two top tier law firms in NYC where I learned and gain a lot of experience. Overall I really enjoy paralegal work.

I would love to be a freelancer or virtual paralegal. Please you can reach me at

Alla M.

I am an experienced IP paraprofessional with 6 years relevant experience in both patents and trademarks and have a masters degree in engineering. Capabilities include all aspects of domestic and foreign trademark and patent work, including associate interface and e-filing. I will work from my office using modern high-speed equipment which includes a T-1 interconnect, as well as international telephonic and fax capabilities. As an independent contractor, I can be engaged on an hourly or project basis. I am conversant with all major IP docketing systems, but prefer my own. I have licenses to all relevant Microsoft applications and association with a patent and trademark draftsman, as well as access to a licensed patent attorney with 35 years experience. If any interest in my services, plese contact me at
Many thanks!

Melodee Currier

eTrademark Paralegal Services ( provides online trademark paralegal services to trademark attorneys on an "as needed" basis. Put our experience to work for you today!

Jennifer Borri

Hi. I am a senior trademark paralegal with 8 years of experience in trademark clearance searching, prosecution and maintenance. For the last two years, I have worked almost solely on heavy clearance searching for branding companies across the country. Please contact me if you are interested in a remote trademark paralegal. I have excellent references and am confident that I can help you with all your trademark needs!

Dawn M. Draper

I am a virtual paralegal and virtual assistant to businesses, attorneys and document preparations services. I struggled to find employment in my area and decided to utilize my skills and degree in my home setting. My office is completely set up for virtual work. You may check out my web site at I do more than just work in the law field. I have the ability to complete data entry, secretarial, web design, Powerpoint presentations, scanning and more.

Chris M. Crosby

Degreed Paralegal with 13 years experience, I offer confidentiality and a varied background; looking for project-based work as a virtual paralegal.

As both a contract and staff PL, my experience includes Securities and Exchange Commission document review, Probate inventory and allocation, and wide range of Corporate work.

Experience in GSA contract proposal writing, data collection, evaluation, review, reporting, and file organization.

All means of RESEARCH as well as interviewing and technical writing.

Contact Chris Crosby

christine m. thompson

I am a paralegal with an A.S. Degree in Paralegal Studies with in excess of 20+ years. I have extensive knowledge in Estate Planning, Trust and Estate Administration, as well as litigation. I am currently unemployed, live in South Florida (Pembroke Pines) and seeking employment. Interested employers may email me at for copy of resume and to further discuss qualifications.

Aside, how do I register with Virtual Paralegal Service?

Debora Lewis

I am very interested in being a virtual paralegal by way of medical summaries, deposition summaries and indexing of documents. I have over 20 years of experience in personal injury,the majority of which has been auto and medical malpractice. I have an excellent grasp of medical as it pertains to the legal field and would like to concentrate solely on this area. I have vast experience from inception of claim through appellate courts but analysis of medical records and deposition is my true enjoyment. Debora Lewis

Sharon Rummels

I am a freelance/virtual paralegal with over 20 years' experience in the area of legal research and writing, bankruptcy, personal injury and medical malpractice, immigration, all phases of litigation, labor & employment and criminal appeals. Reasonable rates, accurate documentation and fast response time. I am based in Texas, for further information please contact Sharon at



You should definately submit your resume to the Greatest American Virtual Job Board which can be found here


I have experience of paralegal documentation work like Indexing, sum making etc. Interested to work as Freelanser. Help me.

Deana Snyder

Hi! We are a virtual paralegal service which provides superior on-demand legal support to attorneys, working in solo practice, small firms and in-house legal departments nationwide, including outside general counsel and also providing virtual assistance services to small businesses and entrepreneurs world-wide.

Our sole mission is to satisfy each and every client and build long lasting business relationships for years to come in addition to helping our clients grow and profit.

We have about 20 years of legal experience in various areas of law including both the private sector and non-for-profit agency. The areas of law we specialize in Elder law while working in the area of Probate Litigation and Contested Guardianship/Conservatorship, in addition to Litigation, Insurance Defense, Contested Real Estate Foreclosure, Premises and Product Liability, Automotive Liability, Personal Injury, Criminal, Contracts, Civil Defense, Maritime Law, Medical Malpractice, Construction, and Family.

By providing virtual paralegal support during off peak working hours and weekends, we can assist you in meeting your last minute deadlines and reduce your cost overhead while increasing your bottom line and savings for clients.

Please contact us for more information and a quote at or visit our website at


Need help with a personal injury case? I am a virtual Medical Paralegal with 17 years' experience in all facets of personal injury litigation and a significant academic medical background.

I work on a contract-basis providing the following services including, but not limited to, reviewing/summarizing medical records, preparing chronologies cross-referenced with records, demand letters, medical research and etc..

I can help develop and expand your client's case into the strongest possible liability and damage position, resulting in increased settlements.

For more information including resume and references, please contact me at Additional information may also be found on my web site:


I am a virtual Paralegal providing service in South Florida. IE) Miami, Broward, and Palm Beach. Please visit my website and contact me if you have a need for family law matters or bankruptcy chapter 7.

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