Giving the People What They Want: The Ability To Contact Their Lawyer Even When You Aren’t At Your Desk

By Samantha Duncan

My clients have the ability to get a hold of me on the telephone, even when I’m not at my desk. Furthermore, they can even contact me when I am not even in the office. However, this does not mean that I have succumbed to breaking my golden rule of never willingly giving out my personal cell phone number to my clients. Instead, my firm uses a cloud-based phone system called RingCentral.

RingCentral allows us to access our office lines through our cell phones through the company’s app which is available for PC, Mac, Android, and iOS systems. RingCentral is not the only cloud-based phone system on the market, there are many competitors such as Grasshopper, Vonage, Nextiva, and more. These systems also give you the ability to text message your clients using your office telephone number through the app so that you do not have to break my golden rule mentioned above. Talking on the phone with a client and text messaging a client is not the only benefit of these systems, as they also allow you to fax documents over your firm’s internet connection. Bottom line is, these systems allow you to be at your “desk” in your bed, in your car, at the courthouse, or anywhere else that you are able to access the internet.

But why may this be important for a small firm? The answer is simple, the one phone call you miss may be your next potential client. The second they get your voicemail, they are already Googling the name of another attorney in the area and trying to obtain their services instead of yours. Missing your next potential client may be missing money that is integral to growing your practice to allow for the next client who may call to obtain your services. As a litigator, I have found that having the ability to access my clients remotely has allowed me to better interact with my clients at times when I may have otherwise been unable to do so. As you grow your practice, I would consider opening yourself up to the idea of a cloud-based phone system to expand your reach and open your communication with your clients while you’re on the go.

Duncan is an attorney at Hopler, Wilms, and Hanna, PLLC with offices in Durham and Sanford, North Carolina. She primarily practices criminal defense and civil litigation and you can learn more about her and her firm at