Hello! My name is Brandy Derrick and I am the owner of Legal Ease Bookkeeping, LLC. I started doing the bookkeeping for a group of small businesses that are all owned or part owned by the same person in 2001. These businesses are in all sorts of industries from advertising to real estate. Some have inventory and some do not. Some have income in the thousands per year and some have income over $5 million per year.
During this time, I learned a lot of things. I helped switch us from Quicken (the PERSONAL accounting software) to QuickBooks Online. I have worked with several CPAs to get the taxes filed for the different companies and learned how they like to receive information and what can make filing taxes easier. I also learned what the owner needs to see in regards to financial reports to run his companies so he can figure out what to change and how to make them grow.
So now you know how I got started in bookkeeping, but why did I start my own company to provide bookkeeping to attorneys?
One of my friends who graduated from law school a couple of years ago moved right after graduation to a new city and had no connections at law offices in this new city, so she struggled to find a job with a good boss. She knew she didn’t want to work for an office that was a machine, where clients and employees were treated like cattle. She wanted to work for a small office where she could learn by working closely with her boss, but these jobs were hard to find without connections. She had several experiences which really showed that even though lawyers are incredibly smart, they need help with bookkeeping. Maybe you can relate to some of these problems?
At one job, she was only paid once a case closed. This means she was working for a while without getting paid, but she was fine with it because she was making headway and had confidence that she was going to close cases. As she started closing cases, she started getting push-back from her boss on paying her. Her boss hadn’t planned properly and didn’t have the money to pay her but thought she would soon. My friend stayed around for several weeks hoping to get paid for her efforts but she was only paid a fraction of what she thought she should have been paid.
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At another job, everything was going great. She was actually getting paid for her work! She noticed after about a year that the caseload was getting smaller and she talked to her boss about how to bring in more clients. Maybe she could work the wheel. Maybe they could advertise in a different way. Her boss didn’t want to take what he considered small cases so she stopped pushing the issue and hoped things would turn around. After about six months into the slowdown, her boss told her he had to let her go because he couldn’t afford her anymore.
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At a third job, she setup a system where her boss paid for all the expenses and she gave him a percentage of what she made. He would market and provide a space to work and she would bill clients and collect money. They would each get their portion of the billed amount, so for her, she had no expenses and knew she was going to get X% of whatever she billed. The problem came when they tried to figure out how much to pay her. They had no way of easily knowing what clients were hers or how much they paid. Both of them were frustrated but had no idea how to go about figuring out a system to get her paid.
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After each time of her quitting or being let go by a small law office, I always had the same thought. I can help these people! Most attorneys never went to business school. They are experts in the law but they have no idea how to run a business or plan for the future. I don’t believe any of her bosses were intentionally trying not to pay my friend. I truly believe that they are all good people, but they didn’t know the first thing when it comes to managing their money and planning for the future.
I started Legal Ease Bookkeeping, LLC so I can help small law offices grow. I give attorneys the power to grow their firms by providing sound bookkeeping and financial planning. Becoming a lawyer is a very noble thing! Attorneys help people through so many life problems. Whether it is small like helping them get out of a speeding ticket or bigger like helping them navigate a divorce, attorneys are always trying to help their clients. I want to help this profession so they can help more people. So you can spend more time practicing the law and less time worrying about bookkeeping.
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