Maybe it’s because you were in a meeting or running from court case to court case. Unfortunately, you were too busy to call or email them back or respond to their web form submissions.

These potential clients should be thought of as potential business lost—missed opportunities due to a poor intake system or lack of bandwidth.

Surprisingly, a lot of law firms underestimate the importance of having an effective intake system.

We can’t stress enough the significance of intake when it comes to capturing every lead and maximizing your return on investment.

Whether it’s setting aside an hour out of each day for just responding to calls and emails, or hiring a designated person/team to handle intake at all times, or even hiring a legal call answering service, the intake process should be the same.

Here are some of our best tips to help transform your law firm intake system into a well-oiled machine.

Respond Swiftly

According to a recent study on law firm intake, 3% of callers gave up before the phone was even answered and 11% of calls lasted less than 10 seconds.

These callers were most likely frustrated by their inability to reach a real person instantly.

In a time of vulnerability, your clients are trying to reach you with a sense of urgency. It’s vital that you respond in the same fashion.

Your firm has leads coming in via phone, email, and your website. There should be somebody ready and able to respond to any form of contact. If not, they will give up and move on. Maybe even after 10 seconds.

The same study found that 42% of the time law firms take three or more days to reply to a voicemail or web-generated form from a prospective client.

If your potential clients can move on after only ten seconds, after three days your law firm won’t even be a thought in their mind. They will already have reached a firm that is going to take care of their needs promptly and with the urgency they are seeking. They won’t look back.

Imagine the leads your firm could capture if you responded right away due to having an effective law firm intake process.

Be Supportive

Answering calls at a law firm requires a unique tone. Your callers are most likely experiencing some sort of traumatic experience. Not to mention, calling a lawyer can be intimidating.

Showing empathy goes a long way. And it can be the difference of capturing a lead and losing one to another law firm.

Whoever answers calls at your law firm should display this supportive tone, whether it’s you, a designated intake team, or an out-of-house call center.

You will notice that showing support and empathy during law firm intake builds trust with potential clients, and trust builds relationships that turn into business down the road.

Use Intake Forms

Another way of showing empathy is not making the potential client repeat themselves over and over.

Intake forms help ensure all of the information you collect stays in one place, somewhere everyone in the firm has access to.

They also ensure whoever is completing the intake collects all of the right data.

According to a study, law firms only asked for the caller’s number in less than half of the cases, and they asked for their email addresses just 14% of the time. This means they simply didn’t gather the potential client’s information to reach them at a later time.

Intake forms help whoever is dealing with intake gather the proper information during every call. They don’t leave quite as much room for forgetfulness or error.

Intake forms are the key to creating an efficient, organized law firm intake system.

Keep Following Up

Say you follow up by calling the potential client, but this time, they don’t respond.

Don’t give up on the lead!

Just like you, this person probably lives a busy life. But don’t let them slip out of your hands because you don’t want to call them twice.

Always assume they want to hear from you, otherwise they wouldn’t have reached out in the first place.

Being persistent during follow-up is just another part of an effective law firm intake system.

You can’t gain more leads if you don’t put an effort into reaching out to those who have already shown interest in you.

Let us Handle Your Law Firm Intake

Simply don’t have enough bandwidth to cover the incoming calls, emails, and web form submissions?

We get it! And we can help.

Alert Communications specializes in intake. We always respond quickly—in fact, we’ll pick up calls for you within the first three rings, every time. Our expert intake specialists are repeatedly trained in empathy, psychology, and legal terminology, so you know your clients will be in good hands. We’ll even follow up with clients on your behalf. Additionally, our services are completely customizable. You decide what your intake form will look like, and we’ll make the calls and ask the right questions on your behalf. It’s that easy!  For more information, visit or call 844-694-6825.