Business Practices to Prevent Fraud in Small to Medium Legal Practices

The best defense against business fraud is for the attorney or attorneys to be involved in the business aspects of their legal practice. The goal here is to implement strong internal controls to accurately record income and expenses and to to safeguard business assets.

The following are recommend business internal control procedures:

  1. Use of accounting software to record business revenues and expenses and prepare
    monthly financial statements.
  2. Monthly reconciliation of business bank statements and review of bank account
    transactions on a regular basis.
  3. Secure business check stock and if paying expenses online use only secure websites.
  4. Password protect access to accounting and records using strong passwords.
  5. Use anti-virus software with an active subscription( not free anti-virus software).
  6. Have an alarm system for the business office location.
  7. Backup accounting and business records on a regular(daily) basis.
  8. Background check all new employees.

Note: The failure to implement strong internal controls and business oversight procedures provides an opportunity for fraud.