Why Your Personal Injury Law Firm Needs an Answering Service


Personal injury cases are time-sensitive. The clock begins ticking the second the injury occurs. Every moment after that point is critical and letting too much time pass could be detrimental to a potential client’s case. So, why do so many personal injury law firms take up to three days to return lead phone calls? 

It’s true. On top of that, most calls aren’t answered when they come in, even though 61% of inbound inquiries occur this way. Instead, they go to voicemail. Many potential clients are hesitant to even leave a voicemail and will instead call a competing law firm. 

In other words, you’re hemorrhaging leads, and that’s not something that any law firm can sustain for very long. A legal answering service can help. 

Key services a legal answering service can provide that give your personal injury law firm an edge

Working with the right legal answering service has many benefits, all of which can give you a leg up over the competition while also ensuring you’re able to build strong relationships with your clients. Let’s look at some of the most important services to take advantage of from a top-rated legal answering service.

1. 24/7 phone answering

This is probably the single most important service. Accidents happen at all hours of the day and night. With a busy schedule, you can’t count on being in the office when a lead’s call comes through. You might hope that a team member will answer the call, take a message, and jot down the lead’s contact information, but that rarely happens. Your team is busy, too. And what about calls that come in after hours?

A legal answering service ensures that every single call that comes into your law office is answered promptly, even if it comes through at midnight. However, make sure that the answering service you choose truly offers 24/7 service. Some claim to offer this, but primarily focus on after-hours answering. A true 24/7 service will handle call answering no matter what time of day the call comes through.

2. Lead screening and intake

How much time do you or your team members spend on the phone with potential leads only to have them ultimately choose another law firm? It’s frustrating, but almost 70% of leads consulted with a business they didn’t hire. That’s an awful lot of communication that doesn’t end in a client retaining your law firm’s services, which means there’s no ROI on your time here. 

A legal answering service can handle your lead screening and intake process for you. This ensures you’re able to focus on your efforts where they matter the most – and will generate the best return on your investment of time and energy. That also ensures you don’t need to assign a team member to play receptionist. They can redirect their efforts where they’ll have the most impact. 

Another benefit of letting a legal answering service handle your lead screening and intake is that when leads do convert into clients, their information is entered directly into your CRM (and it’s error-free). That means no more searching through piles of handwritten notes for names and phone numbers, no more missing details that matter to your case, and no more playing catch-up with updating client records.

3. Booking consultations and appointments

In most cases, you’ll have at least an initial consultation with a personal injury client to learn more about their situation, their injury, and the results of the accident, and to establish responsibility. If you take the case, you’ll have additional appointments to gather information, provide updates, and more. 

Setting those appointments, navigating your calendar, and working with clients to find dates that suit their own schedules can be incredibly time-consuming. Why not let an expert handle it? A legal answering service can handle all your booking-related needs.

4. Handling payments

To turn a profit, your law firm must process client payments. Of course, that can be a time-consuming process, particularly if your clients want to use a payment method that you don’t accept or aren’t familiar with. And don’t get us started on slow-to-pay and non-paying clients. Collections is not a fun process and there are so many better uses of your time.

A legal answering service can help here, too. That’s right. Virtual receptionists aren’t relegated to just answering the phone and setting appointments. The right legal answering service can also handle payment processing. They can also step in and handle your collections processes, ensuring that you can focus on generating revenue rather than trying to work out payment plans with existing clients.

5. Outreach campaigns

In a perfect world, leads would choose you right away. This is not such a world. You’re dealing with emails, web-form contacts, voicemails, and more. The right legal answering service can handle all these callbacks, improving your speed to lead dramatically and ensuring that your team can focus on what they do best. What’s more, virtual receptionists can also make calls to donors, send follow-up emails and text messages, and more to build relationships and ensure you have the steady cash flow necessary for success.

Choosing the right legal answering service

As you can see, there are a lot of benefits for your personal injury firm in choosing to work with a legal answering service. The real challenge is choosing the right partner. At Smith.ai, we’ve built a reputation for excellence by working with personal injury law firms of all sizes. 

Our expert virtual receptionists understand the laws and regulations that govern law office communications and data handling. They’re also capable of freeing your team to focus on critical matters while we handle communications, payment processing, appointment setting, and the other day-to-day tasks necessary to keep your firm running smoothly.

To learn more, schedule a consultation or reach out to hello@smith.ai.


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Written by Mike Graner

Mike Graner is the Marketing Manager at Smith.ai. He focuses on engaging content, company updates, and in-person events.


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Take the faster path to growth.
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Affordable plans for every budget.