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When you opened the doors to your law practice, you probably didn't expect to spend the number of hours you do on administrative and management tasks and duties. And as most lawyers that run a practice learn, management responsibilities are much less exciting than lawyering responsibilities.

Interestingly, making the right business management decisions can actually end up freeing up your time to do what you want: practice law. Below, you can find three tips on how to run your law firm more like a business so you can spend more time lawyering.

You spent years training your legal secretary (because an associate would've been too expensive, ungrateful, and wouldn't have learned anyway), and your secretary is really good. But if you plan to go into semi-retirement while relying on your secretary to keep the wheels turning and profit machine churning, you might want to think twice about how hands off you go. Too much, or not enough, semi-retirement, could lead to full suspension or worse.

A recent case involving attorney discipline involved just one such scenario, and the semi-retired attorney, in the autumn years of his career, is now facing a six month suspension (where he'll get to test out full time retirement). However, the case here does not stand for the proposition that a lawyer, like a judge, cannot go on senior status or into semi-retirement. But, there are lessons to be learned.

Below, you can read three tips on how to avoid facing discipline for going into semi-retirement.

How to Take Your Niche Law Practice to the Next Level

For the wordsmith in all of us, here's the difference between a "niche" and a "specialty" law practice:

Specialty: concentrate on and become an expert in a particular subject or skill. Niche: a comfortable or suitable position in life or employment.

With those definitions in mind, we're going to focus on taking your niche practice to the next level.

Attorney billing is often a controversial subject. And one of the biggest concerns when it comes to hourly billing is the rounding of those hours.

For the most part, lawyers are rarely known for rounding their hours down. After all, once a billing increment has started, there's no smaller increment, and there's no turning back. For lawyers that bill on the quarter hour, rather than the tenth of the hour, rounding up can enable an attorney to squeeze in more hours than there are in a full day, let alone a workday. And like anything that involves asking clients for money, there are pitfalls.

How to Train your Paralegals to Improve Client Communication

At a time when digital assistants can talk, it's still a good idea to have a real-live person talk to clients.

Unfortunately, too many lawyers do not communicate enough with their clients. The "too much work, not enough time" excuse only goes so far -- especially with the State Bar.

Try this instead: Say "hello" to your paralegals and let them do the talking. Training them to communicate with clients could start here.

Why You Shouldn't Hire Your Kids to Work at Your Law Firm

If President Trump goes down as the worst president in U.S. history, he could blame it on his kids.

While first-son Donald Trump Jr. and son-in-law Jared Kushner are galavanting around the globe, many political commenters view the president sinking in a political and legal quagmire. From Russia to China to India, the problems keep coming back to Washington, D.C.

What has all that got to do with the price of tea in China? This is a lesson for lawyers: don't hire your kids to work for you.

How to Stand Out at Your Law Firm

Maybe it goes without saying that sticking out and standing out are entirely different things.

But this is a blog so we're going to say it anyway. Plus, the difference may be more subtle than you think when it comes to your law firm.

Sticking out is like a thumb waiting to get hammered. It's wearing blue and orange together. It's, well, not standing out.

Judge Not Thrilled With 53 Law Firms on One Case

'What is this, some kind of convention for plaintiffs' lawyers?'

That's what Judge Lucy Koh could have been thinking when two law firms brought 49 more firms into a data breach case. Then she told the attorneys what she was really thinking, and it wasn't funny.

"What made you think I wanted 53 firms churning on this case?" Koh asked the attorneys in federal court in San Jose.

How to Legally 'Stalk' a Debtor

Stalking is a crime, even when collecting a debt.

So how can you "legally" stalk a debtor? It can be done, but requires due diligence.

In other words, you can be the bad guy if you follow the laws of your jurisdiction. After all, as Dirty Harry said, "man's got to know his limitations."

You Have a Virtual Practice and Didn't Even Know It

Every lawyer has a website, whether they know it or not.

From the State Bar to LinkedIn, your information is already on the internet for consumers to find. And when you use a web-enabled device to research, send information, download a document or file a pleading, you are effectively practicing law online.

You have a virtual law practice; you just didn't know it. It's really a matter of how much you use it.