Avoiding traps when office sharing

Sharing office space is a great way to save money, develop professional relationships, and referral sources. However, liability and disciplinary issues may arise if you fall into an unnecessary trap when practicing in a shared office space. Remember these simple rules and avoid headaches in the future.

  1. Avoid the use of a firm name that implies a partnership exists;
  2. Do not advertise in a way that implies a partnership exists;
  3. Each attorney should maintain a separate sign on the door, have separate business cards and stationery, and should not refer to each other as "my partner" or "my associate;"
  4. Remember to maintain confidentiality of communications by maintaining an independent facsimile machine, a separate telephone line and email, and ensure that you have a secure independent data storage area for your electronic files and paper files; and
  5. Remember to keep client files out of shared office space.

This tip of the week is courtesy of the Massachusetts Law Office Management Assistance Program. You can contact MassLOMAP at [e-mail info] or call (857)383-3250 for free and confidential consultations.

Published July 15, 2010


For more helpful tips, join the MBA's Law Practice Management Section. Call MBA Member Services at (617) 338-0530 to join.

To learn more about the Law Practice Management Section, contact Co-Chairs Andrea Goldman or Rodney Dowell.
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