For Lawyers: Frequently Asked Questions

About Priori

What is Priori Legal?
Priori Legal is a curated online marketplace that connects our network of high-quality lawyers with business clients.

How does it work?
Clients request lawyers using our online platform and, after verifying their accounts, view their suggested lawyers’ profiles, send messages and schedule phone consultations with lawyers from their dashboards. After a phone consultation, lawyers accept matters from their own dashboards and begin work, using our proprietary billing software to enter their time. Priori takes care of invoicing and collections.

Is Priori a referral service?
Priori is not a referral service. Our business model does not involve a referral fee and there is no out-of-pocket expense for lawyers to join our network. Priori does not recommend or obtain employment for lawyers. Rather, Priori curates its vetted network of lawyers for clients who, in turn, pay a management fee to us for the use of our platform. The selection of attorneys offered to users who request a lawyer is based solely on objective criteria.

Is Priori a law firm?
Priori is not a law firm. While certain members of our staff are lawyers, they are not practicing law at Priori and cannot render any legal services to clients. We inform all clients that the services we provide are not, and should never be, a substitute for legal advice from a lawyer.

What types of lawyers are in the Priori network?
Priori lawyers are leading boutique and small firm practitioners. Priori lawyers have: 

  • Worked at some of the highest-rated law firms, according to U.S. News, Vault, and American Lawyer
  • Represented Fortune 500 and high-growth companies as both in-house and outside counsel
  • Taught as professors and adjunct professors at top-ranked law schools
  • Clerked in federal and state courts
  • Received top-lawyer honors from Super Lawyers, American Bar Association, and Martindale-Hubbell
  • Held (and continue to hold) leadership positions in national, state, and regional bar associations

Attorney Network Eligibility

What are the minimum requirements to join the Priori attorney network?
If you are interested in becoming a Priori lawyer, you can start by submitting an online application. You must meet the following minimum requirements in order to be considered for a position in the Priori network:

  • Be an attorney in good standing. 
  • Have at least 5 years’ relevant, post-bar admission legal experience. The average Priori lawyer has 10 to 15 years’ experience.
  • Carry malpractice insurance of at least $100,000 per incident and $500,000 in the aggregate per year.

What is the Priori vetting process?
Priori cares about maintaining a professional, trusted and competitive network of attorneys, so all lawyer applicants undergo an extensive vetting process before they can be admitted to the network. The vetting process includes our online application, a face-to-face interview, and two reference checks (one client and one supervising attorney).

Does Priori require lawyers to carry malpractice insurance?
Yes. All Priori lawyers must carry current malpractice insurance of $100,000 per incident and $500,000 in the aggregate per year.

How much does it cost to be part of Priori's attorney network?
Lawyers pay nothing to join the Priori network. We only require that each lawyer in the network offer Priori clients a free 30-minute preliminary phone consultation and a discount of at least 25% off their usual hourly rates. 

In the Network

How do I activate my profile?
Once you are admitted, you must log in to your account to complete and activate your profile. Once your profile is activated, you’ll be considered for client requests.

The following steps are required to complete your profile:

  • Click here and select “Login” in the top right corner of the page (we recommend adding this page to your bookmarks/favorites). You can log in to your account using the same email address and password you used to complete and submit your application to join the attorney network. You can also reset your password via the same link.
  • Add rates (see below for detail).
  • Edit and finalize your profile (including profile picture and tagline) by clicking on your name in the top right-hand corner of your account dashboard, selecting “Settings” from the drop-down menu, clicking “View/Edit Profile” and then “Edit Profile”. You can edit each section by clicking the grey pen graphic next to relevant area.

Verify your banking information
In order to use a bank account to receive payments from Priori, you must verify your identity for our third-party payment processor, Stripe. To verify, log in to your Priori account, click the “Verify my Identity” link under “Identity Verification Needed” on your account dashboard, and fill out the form. Verification happens immediately.

Get Reviews
Your profile includes a section for client reviews. When first joining the network, we encourage you to “seed” your reviews section with two reviews from clients outside the Priori platform (i.e. two clients you’ve worked with in the recent past). This can include the client reference you used during the application process, or two new clients.

Share this link: http://svy.mk/1G3nQfu with the two clients you would like to submit reviews on your behalf. This is an important part of getting your profile up-to-speed when first joining the network. Thereafter, all Priori clients will be asked to review your services and positive reviews will be shared on your profile.

Does Priori share my profile information with the public?
No. Your profile information is only shared with verified Priori clients. Your privacy is critically important to us.

Engaging with clients

What is the first step to being engaged by a client?
Clients request lawyers using our online platform, after which we handpick a selection of lawyers for that client based on objective criteria. Clients can then view those lawyers’ profiles and message and schedule phone consultations with them.

How will I know if a client is interested in my services?
If a client is interested in connecting with you in relation to a legal matter, you will receive a notification in your account and by email stating that a client is interested in your services and requesting that you view their request and schedule a consultation. You can view the client’s request, as well as the times they have indicated they are available for a consultation, via the link in the email or through the notification on your account dashboard.

A client may also message you through our Messaging Center to ask you a question. For example, a client may send you a message to query your experience or fees. You will receive an email notifying you when a message is received and can view and respond by clicking the link in the notification. You can also send messages and view your current and past messages via the “Messages” tab at the top of your account dashboard.

Am I required to offer clients a free phone consultation?
Yes. All attorneys in the Priori network agree to offer our clients a complimentary 30-minute phone consultation, however the decision to speak to a particular client is at your sole discretion. If a client is interested in your services and you form the view that you do not want to take on the matter, you may reject it prior to speaking with the client. All we ask is that you do so promptly (by the end of the business day) so that the client may arrange consultations with other network lawyers.

How does the free phone consultation work?
We work with a third-party telephone conferencing service, Twilio, to accommodate your phone consultations. If a client indicates that they are interested in hiring you for their matter, you will receive an email prompt to view the client’s request and their proposed times for a consultation. You can then view those times and either accept one or request that the client send revised availability.

After you have accepted a time, you will be emailed a calendar invite, conference line phone number and a PIN code for the consultation. You can also find the phone number and PIN on the right-hand side of your dashboard when you log in to your Priori account. At the time of your scheduled appointment, simply call the line and enter your PIN when prompted.

What if I need to reschedule my consultation?
If you need to reschedule your consultation, please contact us as soon as possible at admin@priorilegal.com or 646-650-2025 (from 9am - 6pm EST Monday - Friday) so that we can make arrangements with the client. Please provide several days and times you will be available to reschedule the call. We also recommend that you notify the client directly through our Messaging Center, which can be accessed via the “Messages” tab at the top of your account dashboard.

What happens after I complete a consultation?
After you have completed a phone consultation, you will receive a notification on your dashboard and by email requesting that you indicate whether you would like to take on the matter. If you would like to take on the matter, you can do so by clicking the green “Choose Rate” button on the notification and selecting or creating a proposed rate to send to the client. The process for choosing your rate is explained here.

Should I send the client my engagement letter?
The decision is yours. If you want to work with the client, you may choose whether to send the client an engagement letter in accordance with your standard practice. If you elect to provide an engagement letter, we do not  provide boilerplate language for the document. However, for clarity, we recommend that you reference your Priori Rate, mention that the Priori rate includes Priori’s management fee and, if applicable, adapt existing language to indicate that the client will pay you using the Priori platform.

May I decline to take on a client with whom I have a consultation?
Yes. The decision to take on a client is at your sole discretion. If you wish to decline a matter, we simply ask that you do so promptly (by the end of the business day) so that the client may make alternative arrangements, and that you provide us with feedback on why you declined the matter (e.g., the client’s request was not within your area of expertise) so that we can continue to improve our client matches.

What if I speak to a client outside the Priori platform?
If you have completed your consultation with a client outside our platform (e.g. by direct call or meeting), or you have been contacting a client through our Messaging Center, there is no need to schedule a phone consultation through our platform before taking on the matter.

If you have spoken with the client by direct call or meeting, simply click the “Click here to choose your rate” link on the dashboard notification requesting that you schedule a phone consultation, confirm that you completed your consultation outside the site, and select a proposed rate for the matter. The process for choosing your rate is explained in the next section.

If a client has sent you a message via our Messaging Center, you will see a dashboard notification on your account stating that a potential client has asked you a question. To move forward with the engagement and select a rate, click on the blue text in that card which says "Click here to choose your rate", and then click the green "Yes, I'm ready to choose a rate" button. The process for choosing your rate is explained below.

What should I do if I am unavailable for new matters for a period of time (e.g. vacation)?
If you are unavailable for new matters for any reason -- for example, if you are on vacation, extended leave, or are too busy to take on any new work -- you must change your status to “Not Available” under the heading “Change Your Availability” on the right-hand side of your account dashboard. When you are available again, change your status back to “Available for new matters”.

Rates 

What rates can I offer Priori clients?
You must offer clients a rate that is at least as favorable as your “Priori Rate”. Your Priori Rate is calculated by discounting your standard hourly or flat rate by 25%, and then adding the Priori management fee of 10%. For example:

  • Hourly rate example

    • Standard hourly rate = $400/hour

    • Discounted hourly rate = $300/hour

    • Priori hourly rate = $330/hour

In this example you would offer the client your Priori hourly rate of $330 an hour.

  • Flat rate example

    • Standard flat rate = $4,000

    • Discounted flat rate = $3,000

    • Priori flat rate = $3,300

In this example you would offer the client your Priori flat rate of $3,300.

You are also welcome to offer clients hourly rates lower than your Priori Rate and alternative rate structures, such as capped fees and blended rates, provided any fee structure offered to a Priori client (i) represents at least a 25% discount to your usual rate and (ii) reflects Priori’s management fee.  

What rates can I offer non-Priori clients?

You may offer non-Priori clients any rate that you agree with the client. Priori does not require you to provide a discount on your standard rate for non-Priori clients, nor does Priori charge any management fee for the use of our platform for non-Priori clients. You may use our platform free of charge for non-Priori clients. Using the above examples: 

  • Hourly rate example

    • Standard hourly rate = $400/hour

    • No discount or management fee applies.

In this example you would offer the non-Priori client your standard hourly rate of $400 per hour.

  • Flat rate example

    • Standard flat rate = $4,000

    • No discount or management fee applies.

In this example you would offer the non-Priori client your standard flat rate of $4,000.

Am I required to offer flat rate packages to be in the Priori network?

No. Lawyers are not required to provide flat rate packages to join the Priori Network. However, we know that offering flexible fee structures tends to make lawyers more competitive on the platform. If you haven’t offered flat rates before, we are happy to work with you to help develop a few packages that work with your practice.The process for adding flat rate packages is described here.

Can I offer a contingency fee?
Yes. You may work with clients on a contingency fee basis. The contingency fee shall be billed and paid through the Priori platform. The Priori fee charged to clients is 1% of the recovery.

Where can I access my rates?
You can access your rates under the “My Rates” heading on the right-hand side of your account dashboard.

 

How are my rates displayed?
Your default Priori rate will be designated by a red start in the upper-left corner of your My Rates page. You can filter, sort and search for rates via the dropdown menus and search field at the top of the page.

Your individual rates display the client total for both Priori and non-Priori clients. You can click “Details” to see a breakdown of the client total, and select “Edit” or “Archive” to manage your rates. For flat rates, click “+ View Details” to see what is included and excluded in the rate.

How do I create a new rate?
From your rates page:

  • Step 1 - Select “Create New Rate” in the top right of the page.
  • Step 2 - Select “Hourly Rate” or “Flat Rate”.
  • Step 3 - Enter the appropriate market rate. The platform will then display the client total and applicable breakdown if this rate is selected for Priori clients or for non-Priori clients. 
  • Step 4 - Enter the name of the rate, a brief description and (for flat rates) what the rate includes, excludes, and any other potential fees (e.g. filing fees).
  • Step 5 - Review and save.

After you save the rate you will be taken back to your rates page, where the new rate will now be displayed.

Are disbursements included in a flat rate?
You should always ensure that disbursements are listed as an inclusion or exclusion when you create your flat rate for a project.

If you agreed with your client that disbursements will be included in the flat rate package for their project, then disbursements are included in the total flat rate billed to the client and should not be billed in addition to the flat rate.

If you agreed with your client that disbursements are not included in the flat rate package, you can add them to your bill separately when creating an invoice for the project.

 

Projects

How do I create a project for a client?
If you have completed a phone consultation with a Priori client and wish to take on their project, you can create a new project for the client via the link on your account dashboard. If you wish to create a new project for an existing Priori client or for a non-Priori client, select “My Projects” from the side menu on your account dashboard and then “Create a New Project”. You can then fill out the project information as follows:

  • Client - Choose an existing client company and primary contact from the dropdown menus. For new clients, click the “Invite new client” link, fill in the requested information in the pop-up window (email address, full name, company, matter name and description, and whether you will require their payment information) and click “Send Invite”. The new client will then receive an email inviting them to register with Priori Legal.
  • Details - Enter the project name and project description.
  • Rates - Choose the rates for the matter from your existing hourly or flat rates, or create a new rate. If you create a new rate, the rates page will open in a new tab. Once you have created the rate in that new tab, you will need to close the tab and click “Refresh rates” on the project page to have access to your newly-created rate.
  • Invoice - Create an opening invoice for the client (for example, a retainer). 
  • Review & Save - Review the project information and select “Create Project”.

What happens after I create a project?
The client will receive an email notifying them that you have created a project proposal. The client can then register (if not already registered) and review and accept or decline the project terms. If you have requested the client pay an opening invoice, the client will need to submit payment of that invoice before the project can be accepted.

What happens after a client accepts a project invitation?
Once the client accepts a project invitation and (if applicable) pays the opening invoice, you will receive a notification that your proposal has been accepted and you can commence work. For Priori clients, Priori strongly recommends not starting work on a matter until the client has made an opening payment.

Where are my projects displayed?
You can access your open and closed projects under “My Projects” in the side menu of your account dashboard.

How are my projects displayed?
The default display on your projects page shows your projects with the most recent activity first, with your older and closed projects below. You can filter, sort and search for projects via the dropdown menus and search field at the top of the page. Priori client matters are marked with a Priori logo. Non-Priori client projects do not have a logo on the project card. The cards also display a summary of the client and project information, as well as the current status of the project (“Pending”, “Open” or “Closed”).

To view an individual project page, please click on the relevant project card.

What does the individual project page display?
The project page sets out your project information in the following structure:

  • Dashboard at the top - Project settings and billing summary; stopwatch for quick time entry.
  • Project Billing Totals - legal, Priori fees, disbursements and refunds 
  • Unsent line items and invoice builder - enter time as soon as you want and invoice what you want at any given time
  • Invoice Totals - sent, paid, unpaid, drafts scheduled and unsent line items
  • Project Invoices - an itemized list of downloadable invoices at any time

How do I record my time for a project?
Record your time on a project page using:

  • Use the “Start Project Timer” option in the top right corner of the page, which allows you to accurately record the time worked on a project. You can then add the line item once you have stopped recording time.
  • Alternatively, you can add line items by scrolling to UNSENT LINE ITEMS and select “+ADD LINE ITEM”, then begin entering the line item information.

What line item information do I need to enter?
For each line item, you should enter:

  • Type - Select “Hourly”, “Disbursement”, “Flat Amount”, “Retainer”. 
  • Activity Date - Enter the date the work was performed.
  • ABA Activity and ABA Code - Select the applicable codes from the dropdown menus.
  • Description - Enter the activity description. To protect attorney/client privilege, the description field is encrypted so that only you and your client can view the description of work completed.
  • Rate - Choose the applicable rates among those that you added to the project.
  • Quantity - For hourly matters, enter the number of hours, and whether the amount will be written off. If you are charging against a retainer, the amount entered will automatically deduct from the retainer (NOTE: the retainer fee must be paid by the client in order for the offset to occur). 
  • Review & Save - Review the line item and select “Save”. The platform automatically checks whether all required fields have been entered before you can save the entry.

Repeat the process for each additional time entry for the matter. You can edit and delete entries via the links next to each unsent line item.

How do I send an invoice to a client?
Invoicing and payments are explained in the section below.

How do I create a new project for a new or existing client?
If an existing client wants to re-hire you for a new matter, or if you would like to create a project with a new client, follow these steps:

  • From your dashboard, click “My Projects” in the left navigation panel. 
  • In the top right corner, click “+ Open New Project”
  • Client - Choose an existing client company and primary contact from the dropdown menus. For new clients, click the “Invite new client” link, fill in the requested information in the pop-up window (email address, full name, company, matter name and description, and whether you will require their payment information) and click “Send Invite”. The new client will then receive an email inviting them to register with Priori Legal.
  • Details - Enter the project name and project description.
  • Rates - Choose the rates for the matter from your existing hourly or flat rates, or create a new rate. The process for creating a new rate is explained here [Link]. If you create a new rate, the rates page will open in a new tab. Once you have created the rate in that new tab, you will need to close the tab and click “Refresh rates” on the project page to have access to your newly-created rate.
  • Invoice/Payment - Choose whether to send the client an initial invoice (i.e. for a prepaid or retainer amount)
  • Review & Save - Review the project information and select “Create Project”.

 

Invoices & Payment

Does Priori handle billing?
Yes. Priori has its own proprietary billing software that allows you to bill both Priori and non-Priori clients directly through Priori's system. We take care of invoicing and (for Priori clients) collections, so you can focus on what really matters - your clients.

Does Priori share fees with attorneys?
No. Priori does not share fees with attorneys. Rather, Priori receives payment directly from the client for the management services we provide. This management fee only applies to Priori clients. It does not apply to non-Priori clients that are managed through our platform.

What is the Priori management fee?
The management fee is equal to 10% of the applicable rate for a project and is included in the rate that the client will see when viewing your profile on our platform. We always make clear to clients that the composite rate they see includes both your legal fees and our separate management fee. The fee is automatically deducted from the amount deposited in your account when a client pays an invoice.

How does invoicing work?
Priori offers an extremely flexible billing system for its attorneys. For both Priori and non-Priori clients, you can send a project invoice to a client at any time of the month. Simply enter the applicable line entries on the project page and select “Build Invoice”. This will take you to the invoice builder page, where you can select the line items you wish to include in the invoice, review and send the invoice to the client. You can also schedule the invoice to be sent at a later date. After the invoice is issued, the included line entries are removed from the “unsent line entries” section of the project page and the invoice is instead displayed in the invoice listing. Any line items that were not included in the invoice remain in the unsent line items section.

When are invoices sent?
You can send and schedule invoices to go out at any time of the month.

In addition, for Priori clients, unless you have scheduled the invoice to go out at a later time, any unbilled line items for each month are automatically billed to the client on the 8th of the following month. For example, any unsent June line items are automatically billed to the client on July 8th. You will receive a notification prompting you to enter your time at the end of each month, with all time for that month entered by 11:59pm on the 7th of the following month being included in the invoice.

For non-Priori clients, there is no automated billing cycle. Invoices are sent as and when you decide to send them.

How do clients pay their bills?
After an invoice is issued, the client will get an email alerting them that their bill is ready to be paid. They can log in to their Priori account and pay the invoice.

Unless otherwise agreed between Priori, the lawyer and client, Priori clients have 14 days from the day an invoice is sent to pay. If they do not pay an invoice within 14 days of the day it was sent to them, we will autocharge their default payment method for that invoice.

Non-Priori clients have 14, 30, 45, 60 or 90 days to pay the invoice, depending on your specific project settings. Non-Priori clients will only be auto-charged if you selected that option when creating the project.

How are disbursements billed?
You can bill disbursements as Disbursements are included in standard invoices.

Does Priori charge a management fee on disbursements?
No, there is no management fee payable on disbursements and out-of-pocket expenses. Clients are only required to pay the 10% management fee in relation to the legal fee component of their invoice. This amount is charged directly to the client and is displayed separately on the client’s invoice.

Are there any processing fees?
Yes, there is a transaction cost to transfer money using our third-party payment processor, Stripe. The processing fees are set out here. Attorneys will pay any processing fees on their legal fees. The processing fees are automatically deducted from the amount deposited in your account on payment.

Is payment secure?
Yes. We work with a third-party payment processor, Stripe. You can find out more about Stripe’s security measures here.

Can I bill multiple lawyers on one project?
Yes, you can bill multiple rates on one project.

Can I charge a retainer fee?
Yes, you can bill the client a retainer fee at any point during the project. You will have the opportunity to do so when you initially create the project, or you can add it as a line item at any point thereafter.

 

Client reviews

Do clients have the ability to review my performance?
Yes, we’re always looking for ways to improve our service and believe that a robust collection of attorney reviews is helpful for clients when selecting a lawyer. We also require our network attorneys to maintain a 95% approval rating from our clients to remain in the Priori network. All clients are therefore asked to complete a voluntary survey to review their lawyer’s performance after a matter is completed and closed.

Can I see my client reviews after they have been submitted?
Yes, you can view your client feedback by clicking on your name in the top right-hand corner of your account dashboard, selecting “Settings” from the drop-down menu and clicking “View/Edit Profile”. The feedback provided by clients is included in the “Testimonials” section of your profile and under your practice description after the words “[Your name] has been described by Priori clients as…”

What happens if I receive a poor review? Can I object to it?
We thoroughly vet all client reviews before they are added to your profile. If you receive a poor review, you will be contacted by a Priori representative to discuss the review. We always want to make sure that you have an opportunity to raise any objections before any action is taken.

General

Where can I view information about my clients, matters and billing?
You can view current and past information via the “Clients”, “Matters” and “Billing & Invoices” tabs at the top of your Priori dashboard.

How can I change my bank account?
You can change your bank account by clicking on your name in the top right-hand corner of your account dashboard, selecting “Bank Accounts” from the drop-down menu, clicking “Change” and then either choosing your bank from the list available when you click “Choose Bank” or, if your bank is not listed, completing the form and clicking “Save”. Your account will then be verified, which occurs instantaneously on completion of the relevant form (provided your details have been entered correctly).

How can I change my account details?
You can change your account details (profile, email, settings, password, phone number, malpractice insurance, and time zone) by clicking on your name in the top right-hand corner of your account dashboard, selecting “Settings” from the drop-down menu, and then clicking the appropriate item that you would like to change.

Does Priori have an attorney code of conduct?
Yes. Priori cares about maintaining a professional, trusted and competitive network of attorneys. All lawyers in our network must therefore abide by the attorney code of conduct. You can view the code by clicking on your name in the top right-hand corner of your account dashboard, selecting “Settings” from the drop-down menu, and then clicking “View Attorney Code of Conduct”.

Can I contribute to Priori in a speaking or writing capacity?
Yes, absolutely. We encourage you to contact us if you’re interested in speaking engagements or contributing a blog post or article for Priori clients.