As an attorney, I believe that quality legal services should be available to all citizens regardless of their income levels. Many times clients are unable or unwilling to pay hundreds of dollars per billable hour to meet with an attorney in person when they have only general legal questions or need basic legal guidance. I created Kimbro Legal Services, LLC at www.kimbrolaw.com as a way to provide North Carolina citizens with affordable, limited legal services. I believe that kimbrolaw.com may be the first completely virtual law firm in North Carolina. A NC Bar Ethics Opinion passed in January, 2006 allowing virtual law practices, but I have been developing the concept for this website and firm for a couple years now.
Why create a virtual law firm?
First, the number of pro se litigants has been rising and courts are increasingly faced with the challenges and strains this increase creates both legally and administratively on the court systems. Many pro se litigants exist because they cannot afford to retain an attorney. A 2003 American Bar Association’s Report of the Modest Means Task Force stated that one method by which attorneys can improve the fairness of the American legal system is to provide limited legal services “to people who cannot afford ‘full-service’ representation.” Handbook on Limited Scope Legal Assistance, A Report of the Modest Means Task Force, American Bar Association, Section of Litigation, 2003.
Second, without the high overhead costs of a physical law office, Kimbro Legal Services provides clients with limited legal counseling and assistance in civil matters, including the preparation of basic legal documents, such as Partnership and Operating Agreements for small businesses, Residential and Commercial Lease Agreements, Estate Planning materials, Estate Administration forms, and other contracts and agreements prepared in accordance with North Carolina Law. I am just beginning to build the law firm’s business, but I am highly optimistic that it will be a productive method of providing cost-effective and efficient legal services for people who have questions about North Carolina law.