setting up your own business while working at a firm

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Anonymous User
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setting up your own business while working at a firm

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Dec 13, 2009 11:44 am

is it illegal to set up your own firm while working at a law firm?
what about using the law firm's westlaw services for your own business?

I strongly suspect that an ex-colleague of mine, who works as a staff attorney at a small firm, has her own business...

her linkedin page reads "(her name), attorney at law, (city name)" (present)
but does not mention the firm that she works with.

06072010
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Joined: Sat Sep 30, 2006 2:30 pm

Re: setting up your own business while working at a firm

Postby 06072010 » Sun Dec 13, 2009 11:48 am

Normally the firm's employment agreement with restrict you from providing legal services for anyone other than your immediately family subject to conflicts. Using the westlaw of your firm is a great way to get fucking fired. Only a matter of time as at most firms, research charges are DIRECT billed to a client. Put too much of that shit on a non-client code, and the reaper will come.

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MeTalkPrettyOneDay
Posts: 196
Joined: Mon Mar 09, 2009 6:42 pm

Re: setting up your own business while working at a firm

Postby MeTalkPrettyOneDay » Sun Dec 13, 2009 1:12 pm

Illegal? There's a helluva lot of ground between "illegal" and "it'll get you fired."

Anonymous User wrote:her linkedin page reads "(her name), attorney at law, (city name)" (present)
but does not mention the firm that she works with.
Is this the only evidence you have? This is weak sauce.

Also, why do you care?

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ggocat
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Re: setting up your own business while working at a firm

Postby ggocat » Sun Dec 13, 2009 1:12 pm

Anonymous User wrote:is it illegal to set up your own firm while working at a law firm?

Probably not.
Anonymous User wrote:what about using the law firm's westlaw services for your own business?

Theft is illegal the last time I checked.

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nealric
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Re: setting up your own business while working at a firm

Postby nealric » Sun Dec 13, 2009 1:22 pm

Most firms have "no moonlighting" clauses in their employment agreements or firm "no moonlighting" policies. I've heard of firms firing associates for taking up paying clients outside of the firm.

Using the firm's Westlaw account would be theft. They pay a TON of money for that. When I was a summer associate, if I did a westlaw/lexis search without a client billing code, they would always send me an email to confirm it was for an appropriate pro-bono project.

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js87
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Re: setting up your own business while working at a firm

Postby js87 » Sun Dec 13, 2009 1:54 pm

There is nothing illegal about working on the side (as long as you're not stealing supplies or westlaw services from your office), but as one poster said, I imagine most firms have a "no moonlighting" clause and you would run the risk of disciplinary action or termination.




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