From the Other Side of the Table: The Client Experience 3 months ago

Forget your credentials, your clients need you for your problem-solving skills. 

When the phone rings in your office, the person on the other side of the line is often going through the most traumatic experience of their recent life. Too often, as attorneys, we forget that. They are coming to you vulnerable and scared. You have to meet them in that place. Putting yourself in your potential client’s shoes takes a deliberate rewiring of the way we think. 

Let’s take personal injury attorneys for example. The personal injury attorney might assume people know what to do when they get in an accident. It’s what he does (and he advertises a lot to make sure people know!).


But if you’ve never been in a car accident, you actually have no clue what to do. The shock alone can make you forget everything you think you know. Am I injured? I don’t feel that injured. What are my options? Who’s going to pay for these medical bills? What do I say if they call me?

It’s the same thing for clients of attorneys dealing with immigration, divorce, DUIs– the client doesn’t know what to do. They are going through a traumatic event. We’ve discussed how you need to be the expert your clients are looking for. But you also need to remember, as that expert, they don’t need your credentials….they need your problem-solving skills. 

“What are we going to do? What are the next steps? What’s the timeline?” 

You are the person with the answer to the questions that have plagued them. 

From the client’s side of the table. 

As attorneys, when we sit across from someone, we’re often thinking “Can this person really pay me thousands of dollars? How much? Will I end up working for free?” It’s okay. That’s our job and we have to know that we’re going to be paid for our work.

As a client in need of an attorney, when sitting across from you, they’re thinking “How can I get my son out of jail? Do I need to secure housing before leaving my husband? Will I be able to afford to live? Am I going to be deported?”

They are full of thousands of questions, and they already know it’s going to cost a lot. They certainly weren’t planning on this. Clearly, both parties are coming to the table with vastly different interests. 

What if money wasn’t the issue?

Everyone believes that money buys justice or freedom or liberty. The point is – people know that money solves problems! People with money want an affordable way to pay an expert to help them with their case. This begs the question – How affordable are you?

For attorneys who use Fortify by iQualify Lending, the answer is – the most affordable. iQualify Lending is more than just legal retainer financing…it’s the easiest way to get hired, get paid, and get out of the collection business once and for all.

Using Fortify removes you from the financial transaction. And your clients will appreciate the simplicity of the payment options. It supports their belief that you are an expert. Now you get to be the problem solver. 

Now, sitting across from that new client, you can calm their fears and answer their questions, telling them, “With the dice we’ve been rolled…here’s the best-case scenario we can put you in….that is my goal as your attorney.” 

Start using Fortify powered by iQualify, and instantly become affordable to every client that wants to hire you. Now that money’s out of the way, it’s about being present and helping them through the most traumatic experience of their lives. 

Get out of the collections business once and for all. Your clients, your staff, your mental health, and your bank account will thank you!

The Psychology of the Middleman 3 months ago

Attorneys need a third party to make the difference.

In what situation does having a middleman make all the difference? As FastCompany explains, Middlemen “are more prevalent–and more important–than ever. Agents, brokers, dealers, and resellers get a bad rap, but they play a crucial role in almost every platform today— As a result, being an effective middleman has become an even more valuable skill than it was in the past.”

Middlemen are particularly useful for attorneys and retainer financing. As our last few blogs have pointed out, a lawyer’s psychology and mindset when entering into their pitch with a client are extremely important. Your belief system enters into any meeting before you do and, when playing a game of retainer-payment-chess with your client, it becomes an immovable force. While you need to focus on (or stubbornly cling to) all of your mental chess pieces, your middleman steps in to get the important work done. 

Think of your belief system as a ladder with five rungs. The bottom rung is your identity, which shapes your beliefs. The next rung is belief, which shapes the next rung, capability. That rung influences behavior and those behaviors shape your environment. This ladder is powerful and cannot easily be dismantled. You carry this ladder into all of your pitches and meetings with clients. It can be very hard to negotiate and work from a place of compromise when you’re hauling around a heavy ladder of belief. 

  • Environment
  • Behavior
  • Capability
  • Belief
  • Identity 

There’s something about having a middleman, someone who is NOT carrying your ladder around, someone who can be the responsible third party, that is essential to making the attorney/client relationship work. While you’re stuck in your mindset, the middleman is free to negotiate. There are very few attorneys who are getting their mindset right, are getting paid fully by their clients, and who aren’t suffering from this issue. Everyone knows it exists and that it sucks but no one wants to talk about the depth of the problem because we’re raised to win trophies. We, especially as attorneys, often believe we can do it (and win it) all ourselves. 

You may think you don’t need a middleman, but chances are you’re already using one. Attorneys push this stuff off on office managers and employees to get rid of that pain. But the one dealing with the pain didn’t create the cost, they’re just collecting. Betty’s job at the front office is not to collect your money! Betty’s job is to do 8 hours of work for your practice….not chase money around. You don’t have the time either. Betty is not the middleman. You cannot be your own middleman.

Fortify, powered by iQualify Lending, is ready to be your middleman. Start using the Fortify software and you’ll have an easy, modern way to get new clients signed up when they come to you, As the attorney, you get paid upfront with both cash and financing options and get paid over a period of time with an in-house payment option. iQualify attorneys get paid their full retainer on most of their cases without ever having to chase their clients for money or call them for payments.

Contact us today and let’s get started making Fortify your middleman, protecting your practice and letting your belief system do what it does best: win cases for your clients.

Want to find out more about the most famous American middlemen? Esquire has a fun article on seven key middlemen in U.S. history.