Pioneering the Non-Profit law firm model with Carolyn Devries

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By Andrea Perry-Petersen and Andrea Perry-Petersen - Innovator. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

In today’s episode no. 29 I had the pleasure of speaking with Carolyn Devries, CEO and founder of Australia’s first non profit law firm New Way Lawyers for today’s episode. When Carolyn experienced a disconnect between how law is practised and what she learned in law school, and wanted to find a way to express her core values through her work, she developed the idea of and founded new way lawyers 10 years ago.

Carolyn has strong views and advocates at every opportunity as to why legal services that involve strong emotions for the clients, such as family law and estate law, should be delivered through a non profit model. She sees family law as a community service with strong public policy implications, and I tend to agree. Provision of legal services, or someone’s inability to access legal services can lead to a greater demand on other social services.

Carolyn shared her personal story about the early days of new way law, the fun and not so fun parts, especially being challenged by other members of the profession about her approach, sometimes from sectors of the profession you would expect to be more supportive. And you might be wondering, being not for profit how is this business sustainable? Carolyn explains how she keeps the lights on, while keeping her staff happy and her fees affordable.

If you are someone who tunes in to hear about the use of technology in a practice, you’ll get a few tips towards the end of the interview regarding how to maximise efficiency and streamline services. Apart from increasing your profit margins, doing so could garner you interest in your practice from around the country and overseas, as it has in the case of New Way lawyers.

This episode brought to you by Lex Narro and Neota Logic.

Andrea Perry-Petersen – LinkedIn - Twitter @winkiepp – andreaperrypetersen.com.au

Twitter - @ReimaginingJ

Facebook – Reimagining Justice group

46 episodes