Tuesday, April 22, 2014
Two Canadian lawyers who met while pursuing an MBA have opened a business called Legal Axess which offers discounted legal services seven days a week through several Walmart stores in Ontario. Among other services, the firm offers $99.00 wills, $25.00 notarized documents and representation in real estate transactions that allow home buyers and sellers to exchange keys outside of traditional banking hours. The pair say that doing a higher volume of business due to their location inside a department store permits them to undercut traditional small law firms in terms of pricing. From the Toronto Star:
Behind the plastic jugs of liquid Tide stacked near the entrance of a new Walmart in Markham is an innovation in discount retailing: Axess Law.
Founded by Toronto lawyers Lena Koke and Mark Morris, Axess Law provides fast and affordable legal services to time-pressed shoppers.
Simple wills are $99. Notarized documents are $25, plus $19 for each additional document.
The Axess office in the Walmart on Copper Creek Dr. in Markham is a slim 600 square feet, branded in orange (think ING, Joe Fresh) and is open seven days a week until 8 p.m. It opened in January.
An Axess law office opened at the Walmart in the Scarborough Town Centre last June, and another this month at the Walmart at Eglinton Ave. E. and Warden Ave.
Another is scheduled to open at a Cedarbrae Walmart on Lawence Ave. E. in May.
The partners, lawyers who met at the University of Toronto Rotman School of Management while completing their MBAs, are hoping to open locations in Walmarts across Ontario within the next two years and Canada within the next four.
There is no mahogany or marble and no appointment necessary.
“A lot of people are intimidated by lawyers. This is a non-intimidating setting,” said Koke, over the sound of grocery carts slamming together and the beeping of the store exit alarm.
Evenings between 5-8 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays are their busiest times, says Morris.
. . . .
“That’s when most lawyers have shut down their operations – that’s when we fly.”
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