#StartUpSpotlight: Rocket Lawyer Brings Affordable Legal Services for All
In this first edition of our weekly StartUp Spotlight column, we speak with Mark Edwards – VP & General Manager of Rocket Lawyer UK – whose company aims to bring affordable legal services to families and businesses …
Rocket Lawyeris a new breed of online legal service with one mission: to make the law simple and affordable. We use smart online technology to provide businesses and families with easy-to-use, professional legal documents and affordable help from specialist lawyers.
Why is it taking off?
It may be the last service industry to modernise but the legal landscape is now changing and digitalising fast, especially with the introduction of technology to the industry by innovators like Rocket Lawyer. Originating from San Francisco, Rocket Lawyer is the most widely used legal service in America with tens of millions of customers and it is now shaking up the legal industry in the UK, providing businesses and families with the simple and affordable legal help they expect, need and deserve.
How did it start?
Rocket Lawyer was founded in the US by Charley Moore. He realised through working with individuals, start-ups and small businesses that there wasn’t a simple and affordable way for them to manage all of their everyday legal needs – a result of the failure of the legal industry to modernise and move with the times. That’s why he created Rocket Lawyer. The fact that it is now the most widely used online legal service in America demonstrates the gap that existed in the market and the need for this kind of service. Since launching in the UK, we have found that consumers and small businesses face the same issues and that our service is growing rapidly in popularity.
With Rocket Lawyer, you can create business essentials from employment contracts and business plans, to shareholder and confidentiality agreements. You can also create important family documents from wills and power of attorney, to change of name deeds and prenuptial agreements. We use smart technology to guide you through an online interview to create legal documents that are tailored to your needs. It asks simple questions and provides explanations at every step so you don’t have to battle over complex jargon. Creating a document takes 20 minutes or less and gives you the reassurance that you have taken all the relevant steps to protect your family or business. Membership costs £25 per month and includes unlimited legal documents, 30 minute free consultations with On Call lawyers and up to 33% off additional legal fees.
And the financing?
We were invested in by Google Ventures who are interested in assisting start-ups.
What next? What’s the long-term ambition?
We want the law to be affordable (and you can’t get more affordable than free) so we have introduced a one-week free trial where customers can try the service out to see how it can help with their legal needs before committing. We will be expanding our legal services to Northern Ireland and Scotland so we can help even more families and businesses with their legal issues. New businesses are the lifeblood of our economy so it is important that they have access to the tools they need to ensure they are on the correct legal footing. We’re passionate about supporting entrepreneurs, start-ups and small businesses to make sure that everything they are working hard to achieve is protected.
We will also be rolling out the use of e-signatures across the UK so contracts can be created, shared and signed more easily and securely. In 10-20 years’ time, legal services will be paperless and digitalised and we are proud to be spearheading that future.
StartUp Spotlight is a weekly column where LSBF speaks with the leaders of young start-ups and businesses with a view to inspiring a new generation of entrepreneurs.