A new veterans benefits lawyer told me the other day: "I can't compete with the big law firms in Veterans benefits law. Those big firms have contracts with VSOs and scoop up all the good veterans benefits law cases."
First, that's not true. Nobody "scoops up all the good cases".
While big veterans law firms may cherry pick from a VSO's inventory the cases that are right for their firm's business model, they don't - they cannot - handle all the cases.
There are plenty of cases for any accredited VA attorney who wants to make a difference in the life of a veteran, their survivors and their children.
That's what is really awesome about the practice of veterans disability law: there is NO end to the opportunities to carve yourself a niche in VA benefits law, and therefore, no real need to compete, at least not in the traditional sense.
Now, I will say that the bigger veterans benefits law firms take up a lot of the jurisprudential "bandwidth" in the "halls of government", and so to a degree, how they see the law, and how they choose to interpret it, can have an impact on how other veterans benefits lawyers - and veterans - experience VA benefits law. That's more a function of history though, than competition; as more and more lawyers and law firms become quite skilled at advancing novel - or overlooked traditional - legal theories at the courts, the control over the law is more democratized, and new and wonderful things start to happen.
Second, the internet has leveled the playing field so that the smallest of dogs can give the biggest a run for their money.
To be able to compete, though, you must be able to assess your law firm's (and your opponents') strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.
Only when you can see the intersection of your Strengths and Opportunities and your competition's Weaknesses and Threats can you truly compete with other and bigger veterans benefits law firms.
I will walk you through the SWOT analysis, and how it can help your firm compete in the market of veterans benefits law.