Dallas tech start-up connecting people with lawyers seeks $1 million in funding – Dallas Business Journal – Dallas Business Journal

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A Dallas start-up is looking for more funding as it seeks to match the less-than-legal-savvy and lawyers looking to help.
Lawmato, a company that got off the ground this year, is aiming to raise about $1 million, expanding on roughly $500,000 that included backing from founder Tom Tong, who began the new digital service this year.
Tong has unveiled a platform that provides new options for folks who need legal help – but don’t know where to look and may not be able to afford some lawyer fees. At the same time, the service is a place for attorneys to assist while getting some structure around processing folks they’ve never worked with in the past.
“This puts consumers in a position to consume legal services in a very convenient way,” Tong said in an interview.
It’s a connection with people who are serious about needing assistance and are willing to pay – and that’s a big deal for lawyers.
There is a lot to bringing on new clients that costs time and money, including checking for conflicts, Tong said. Lawyers may not have the time and resources to manage onboarding of new contacts that happen to call in to their offices.
“People don’t know which ones are willing to pay and which ones are not willing to pay,” Tong said.
Tong himself has provided free legal help through his law firm, Locke Lord, which has offices around the country. Yet he saw much more need than he could ever fill – and an opportunity to launch the service.
He worked with software developers through a contact he had in the telemedicine industry.
With legal work, the “initial consultation part is very similar to telemedicine,” he said. Most of the time, consumers just need 30 minutes with a lawyer to know whether they have a case or whether they need to do to move on.
Lawmato invites lawyers onto the platform that are recommended, he said, helping ensure quality.
The services include areas such as immigration, divorce or real estate. People who use the service log on and then reach out to a desired lawyer. From there, the process begins, and, if it progresses, a meeting is set up.
“The consumer will have to enter their credit card information,” he said. “That’s a game-changer because at that time you become a paying client.”
With the new funding, he’s looking to do marketing and add personnel.
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