Book a Breakthrough Call

3 Keys to Creating a Law Firm that Stands Out

Laura Ramos James was close to tears in the courtroom.


She was deposing a widow who had lost her husband in a terrible accident. Her supervising attorney had made it clear that Laura’s job was to get the testimony that she had moved on with her life, and she was at peace with what happened. But of course, she wasn’t. 

That was Laura’s aha moment. 


She realized she belonged on the other side, defending the victims. The boutique litigation firm she was working for in South Texas allowed her to get her trial experience and litigation skills, but she knew this wasn’t the right place for her anymore. 

Growing up in Mexico, Laura had wanted to be a lawyer for as long as she could remember. When she moved to the States, she realized every perception she had of courtrooms, litigation, and getting justice came from the US. She decided the best way to accomplish what she wanted was to stay here. 

So she learned English, went to college in San Antonio, and graduated from Baylor Law School. 

After her experience at the boutique firm, Laura decided to move to Austin and ended up working for two different personal injury law firms. Even though she was in trial and doing litigation like she’d always wanted, it wasn’t leading to happiness, and she couldn’t figure out why. 

She’d spent years studying what she wanted to do. She’d left her home country and her family to be in the United States, pursuing what she wanted to do. Why was she still not happy? 


Thankfully, her husband knew how to ask the right questions. 

He wasn’t the type of person who would tell her what to do, but he did know how to ask her things like…

What do you like?
What makes you happy about your job?

What are the things that make you super excited to wake up in the morning?


Little by little, the idea became more clear that Laura wanted her own firm. Deep down, she’d always had an entrepreneurial desire - she just wasn’t sure what it would look like. Finally, she decided to leave her job and start her own firm. 

Today, Laura has her own personal injury law firm, The Ramos James Law Firm, headquartered in Austin, Texas. She’s received some of the highest recognitions in her industry, including the 2023 Austin Women’s Magazine Women’s Way Award and the Advocacy and Activism Award by the Latina Foundation. As a personal injury victim herself, she’d always had a dream of being able to serve people in a similar situation. Her firm carries that same heart today. 


Here are 3 keys that have set Laura’s firm apart from the rest:





Building community is crucial for success, professionally or personally. When you go out on your own, you’re not going to have the answer to so many things, but you can find what you need in community. 

People want to see you succeed more than you think. Laura has reached out to countless colleagues who chose to give her advice and help her grow instead of viewing her as a competitor. This inspired her to do the same for others. 

Sadly, she’s seen a lot of people give up on their dreams of having their own firm saying, “It’s too competitive and cutthroat. I can’t find clients.” So they go back to working for someone else instead of hiring a consultant or coach to help them out. 

You don’t have to know it all. It’s okay to seek out the appropriate experts for the things you don’t know. It’s okay to lean on your network to tell you what you don’t know. 





Towards the beginning of opening her own firm, someone gave Laura the advice that she should try to keep some sort of schedule or discipline. She’s found this to be an incredible piece of advice because it would’ve been easy to get derailed or distracted by things that didn’t matter that much. 

She recommends people create some sort of schedule. It doesn’t have to be 9 to 5 every day, but something that works for you. Laura has found that if she’s left to her own devices, she’ll get focused on one thing like marketing and forget about everything else. Creating a consistent schedule in her business has been really helpful. 





Laura has created a vibrant, positive work culture in her firm beyond what she ever would’ve dreamed because law school and other firms were so serious. She felt like she had to be perfect, and no one could ever make a mistake. The work hours were not sustainable. 

But you can be an excellent law firm without berating people. You can have a celebratory culture where you give credit to the paralegals for resolving a case. You can allow room for mistakes. Laura tells her lawyers, “If you make a mistake, tell me. If you don’t tell me, that’s where the trouble starts. Nobody’s perfect. We’re all human. You just have to come forward so we can solve it together.”

Expecting everyone to be perfect leads to people hiding things, depression, and all those things that make work not sustainable. That’s where people leave firms in massive numbers. That’s where things like substance abuse happen. 

Laura has also taken the time to hand select the members of her team to make sure everyone is a good fit. Her firm is there to create a positive environment not only for the clients they serve, but the employees who work there. 

Laura’s story is so incredible. I love that she’s allowed her heart to guide her and created a culture in her firm that’s different from the normal legal culture. People feel valued and seen and want to go to work every day. This is so key. When you get people on board with your mission and let them shine in their gifts, that’s when you see massive growth in your business. 


Connect with Laura: 


LinkedIn: Laura Ramos James

Listen to Powerhouse Lawyers