Thursday, June 26, 2014

LawKick: Lawyers go Groupon

Tell me about yourself.

Aaron George and Michael Chasin met during their time at Loyola Law School. Both quickly learned of each other's entrepreneurial ambitions and past successes starting businesses. Neither of them had a strong desire to actually practice law but both saw some major deficiencies in the legal industry so they decided to start LawKick in the 2nd year of the law school career.

Tell me about LawKick.

LawKick is a marketplace for finding a lawyer. You just have to fill out a few questions and then wait for lawyers in your area to submit proposals to work with you. Conversely, if you are looking to act quickly and get a ton of savings, you can purchase a Deal for discounted legal services through LawKick Deals. 

How is it different from the legal marketplaces? Also, tell me more about your "Groupon-like" program.

We're different because we allow you to freely use the platform at absolutely no cost. We understand that legal services are very expensive, so we don't want to increase that cost. The "Groupon-like" program is LawKick Deals ( Consumers can find a Deal for discounted legal services that fits their specific need. In many instances, consumers can choose from a few different lawyers offering similar deals to find the right fit. They prepay for the Deal to lock in the savings and will get a 30 minute consultation with that lawyer. If they're not sure you want to proceed with that lawyer, for whatever reason, they get a full refund, no questions asked.

What inspired you to create LawKicks? 

We saw all of our friends, who were smart and qualified attorneys, struggling to find jobs. Conversely, we were constantly asked by our non-lawyer friends "do you know a lawyer who does xyz...?" It was crazy to us that there were so many lost clients but so many unemployed lawyers. Not only that--if there are so many unemployed/under-employed lawyers, why are legal expenses so high? In any industry, when supply is high, prices should be low. But for some reason, this normal occurrence did not exist in law. So we thought of LawKick to create a transparent and open marketplace to hopefully employ more lawyers and bring the cost of legal services down.

What's innovative about it? 

By creating an open marketplace, we have enabled lawyer to acquire clients at a lower cost than normal. Because of this, they've been able to lower their prices without affecting their profits. It's a win-win for everyone. 

What's been your greatest challenge thus far? 

Marketing. It is extremely difficult to educate the consumer about our product and to think of us when they encounter a need for a lawyer

What is the demographic of your main customer? 

Our demographic varies quite a lot depending on the type of lawyer being sought. Our most common user, however, would be an entrepreneur in their 20s or 30s looking to startup/run a company

What's been your greatest success so far? 

Efficiency. We've been able to create a site that works extremely well. Some clients receive responses from lawyers within 2 minutes of submitting a request. On average, clients don't have to wait more than 15 minutes to hear from a lawyer and typically receive around 8 lawyers to choose from.

What changes do you foresee in the company? the legal industry? 

The legal industry is changing considerably. Lawyers, while far behind the curve, are finally starting to utilize technology to benefit their practice. Our goal is--now that we've made the clients' lives a lot easier--to do the same for lawyers. We're developing products to help lawyers manage their practices better.

Are you an attorney? Did you go to law school? Are you doing the startup full time? 

Michael did not take the Bar, but did graduate from his JD/MBA programs. Aaron dropped out of law school after his 2nd year. Both doing the startup fulltime, along with 4 other people.

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