“Starting and Running a College Consulting Practice,” Texas Lawyer

August 10, 2021

In an article published online in Texas Lawyer on August 10, 2021, Partner Penny Linsenmayer discusses considerations and best practices for operating an independent educational consultant (IEC) practice. 

As Linsenmayer explains, IECs essentially help students and families navigate the complex and often overwhelming college admissions process. 

“As both a corporate lawyer and the founder of a thriving IEC practice, I’m in a unique position to assist IECs with legal issues relating to their work, including business start-up procedures, transitioning a solo practice to a multi-IEC group and developing a custom client contract,” she says. 

While most IECs operate as sole proprietors, a recent industry trend is the consolidation of practices into a multi-IEC group. 

“Formation of a multi-IEC practice requires evaluation of more complex legal start-up questions, including choice of entity, effecting legal filings to form the entity, ongoing state and local reporting and tax filing requirements, establishing financial systems and operational decision-making procedures, determining the revenue and expense allocations among members, and settling on the protocol for bringing on new members, hiring employees, or engaging other IECs as contractors (taking

care to follow guidelines to appropriately characterize non-owner IECs as employees or contractors),” Linsenmayer says. 

She further explains additional best practices for running an IEC, including creating a strong and comprehensive client contract and including customized and thorough disclaimers. 

“Given the projected growth in the educational consulting industry, one hopes that the industry professional organizations will develop a comprehensive model contract,” Linsenmayer concludes, “but most IECs will continue to benefit from individualized legal advice tailored to their unique business platform and plans.” 

For the full article, click here

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