I love speaking to solo and small firm lawyers who want to improve their practices — especially through the strategic use of technology. Obviously, there are challenges to using technology effectively, but the effort to use technology to “work smarter, not just harder” is worth it.

I discovered this for myself (about twenty years ago) when I created a 100% paperless, highly automated law practice. As a result, I could work less but accomplish more, while earning enough to be happy and get away from work when I wanted to.

Now, I spend all my time helping other lawyers who also want to create their own version of a much better law practice.

Even though I’ve won awards, like this one from the ABA, my approach and style don’t appeal to everyone. These are the lawyers I’m best suited to help.

So, if you believe I’d be a good fit for your audience, scroll down to learn more.

Working with me

I understand the challenges that event organizers face, and I try hard to make their lives easier. People who’ve invited me to speak say some nice things.

What They Say…
Mark RobertsonABA

I have known Ernie for a number of years as a member of the Law Practice Division of the American Bar Association and worked with him in his speaking and writing capacity – helping lawyers become better lawyers. Ernie is a terrific writer and speaker and I would endorse him and give him high marks in both areas.

Stephanie PhelanMyCase

Ernie was really amazing to work with from start to finish. He was responsive and had great suggestions. He always responded to my requests same day and provided materials well ahead of deadline.

Jared CorreiaMassachusetts Bar Ass’n

When my company was looking for a presenter on that topic for a webinar to be broadcast online and for our holiday party, Ernie’s was the only name I considered…Ernie brings good humor and an engaging affability to every presentation he gives, and is always thoughtful and professional. He is sensitive to deadlines, prepares himself well and can adjust to technical difficulties and unexpected hiccups. Ernie the Attorney is, without a doubt, one of the top continuing legal education presenters in the United States.

Sean DesmondFlorida Bar Ass’n

As Conference Chair for the recent Solo & Small Firm Technology Conference at The Florida Bar Winter Meeting, I was thrilled with the service that Ernie provided me and all of the conference attendees. From assisting with planning the conference and speaking during numerous segments during the conference, Ernie has proven himself to be a fantastic resource for all things technology based as they relate to the practice of law. He is a dynamic speaker who really really knows his stuff!

Marc MathenyIndiana Bar Ass’n

As Vice-Chair of the Indiana State Bar Association Solo Small Firm Conference, I had the pleasure of asking Ernie to give the Keynote Address at our Conference in June, 2012. Having seen “Ernie the Attorney” several times as a speaker at ABA TECHCHOW, it did not surprise me that Ernie gave one of the most compelling presentations I have ever seen, giving his viewpoint on the advantages of the solo practice of law. The audience … gave Ernie one of the highest speaker ratings given to a presenter in the history of the Conference. I would highly recommend Ernie as a speaker and cannot wait to have him return.

My Guidelines

Here are some things you should know before you invite me to speak.

Speaking Topics

I only speak on the topics that I’ve refined through frequent presentations (scroll down to see the list).

Signature Talk

My “LawFirm Autopilot” presentation is foundational. The other topics I cover build off of this presentation, so you must request this topic. If you ask me to do more than one topic, this is the one I need to present first.

Written Materials

I have developed written materials for all of my presentations and carefully refined them. I will not create new written materials, so if that’s required do not ask me to speak.

Assisting with Promotion

I’m happy to help promote your events through Twitter and Facebook. I will also send a broadcast notification to people on my email list.

At the Event

I love meeting folks at the live events I’m invited to, and will happily attend any dinners, receptions, or other social gatherings.

Honoraria, Travel & Hotel Costs, etc.

I don’t charge for speaking to bar association groups (or similar organizations) because I know that they operate on limited budgets. But if getting to the event requires me to travel outside of Louisiana then I need to have the following costs reimbursed: plane fare (or car mileage) and two nights’ hotel stay (or an additional hotel night per each additional day of speaking that you want me to do).


Developing and refining a solo presentation is hard enough, so I don’t do joint presentations or panel presentations.

Speaking Time

My talks are created to last for 60 minutes. But some state CLE rules call for 50-minute talks to get 1 hour of credit. Bottom line? I will adjust the time of my speech to meet your requirements.

Best of All?

I know how disruptive it is for event organizers when speakers exceed their allotted time. So I’m obsessive about ending on time (or before my time is up).

Speaker Brochure

If you need a speaker kit (with photo, biography etc.), shoot me an email and I’ll send it out to you right away.


Ernie helped me organize, mobilize, and optimize my personal injury law practice…Following his advice, I’ve made more money than ever while lowering my stress levels and overhead.

Parker Layrisson

I had the chance to hear Ernie at a Florida Bar conference, all I can say is wow. I thought I was pretty tech savvy before hearing Ernie speak. After about 5 minutes I stopped doodling and started listening. My first day back at work had me implementing his tips, purchasing his book and signing up for his newsletter.

Don Morrell

What I found most appealing about Ernie’s presentation though was his genuine and sincere desire to help fellow lawyers leverage technology to achieve their goals.

Sierra Anne Pino

My biggest sensei in starting my solo law practice was Ernie Svenson. Not only did he give me good advice about the business end, he was also my spiritual guide…Ernie is an amazing guy.

David Sparks

I both give and hear a lot of speeches. Ernie, who I first discovered as a fellow blogger back in the long ago days when blogging was a rarity for lawyers, is first class. I recently heard his speech on Adobe Acrobat, one of his areas of expertise, and not only thoroughly enjoyed the presentation, but learned a lot, even though I thought I was a pretty experienced user. Highly recommended!

Michael Fox

I have had the opportunity to hear Ernie present on law and technology multiple times in different settings. Each time I have found his presentations engaging and informative. His passion for learning and using technology to improve the practice of law is evident, and the practical solutions offered in each presentation reflect his depth of knowledge and well preparedness. I have left each presentation with new ideas and techniques to implement in my own practice

David Ogwyn

An incredible value and experience! Ernie gave me so much information that I was looking for in planning my solo firm, and saved me so much time, instead of trying to find answers on my own.

Carlee Gonzales

I recently attended a presentation by Ernie at the ABA Tech Show about the use of Adobe Acrobat and was extremely, extremely impressed. Ernest is extremely knowledgeable about technology issues and a superb public speaker. As a result of his one-hour presentation, I learned a tremendous amount about the use of Acrobat that will make me a more effective and efficient attorney. And Ernie went above and beyond the call of duty, and helped me set up a digital signature using Acrobat following his presentation. I cannot recommend Ernie highly enough – if you are looking for a speaker on technology issues (especially Acrobat), he is the one you want – you will not find anyone better!

Greg Goonan

It is clear that you love helping people

Catherine Fairchild

My Biography

(If you book me to speak feel free to copy whatever you want to use as a biography)

Ernie Svenson worked in a big firm for 18 years handling complex, paper-intensive business litigation matters.

Then he learned to leverage technology to create a paperless solo practice. His low-cost website attracted a steady flow of good clients, which made his practice financially successful as well.

Now, through his LawFirmAutopilot website, he helps other lawyers build their own dream practices. Ernie is a nationally recognized speaker and author on various topics such as paperless lawyering, email efficiency, document automation, and online marketing.

He speaks regularly at state bar association events and industry conferences, including the ABA TechShow. He has written two ABA-published books: Acrobat in One Hour for Lawyers, and  Blogging in One Hour for Lawyers.

He has received numerous awards for his work, including the ABA’s 2018 Solo & Small Firm Trainer Award. Ernie was also chosen to be a FastCase 50 honoree.

Topics I Cover

Working Smarter

How to Run an Enjoyable, Stress-Free Law Practice

If you’re in a small firm practice, you must be ruthless about using limited resources (e.g. your time). Digital technology can help you “work smarter” and leverage those limited resources in mind-boggling ways.

Working Smarter will ensure everything gets done reliably and effortlessly—even while working remotely. Specifically, it’s about leveraging paperless automation, outsourcing and web marketing to create a financially rewarding practice that also gives you maximum personal freedom.

Session Covers

  • The #1 reason most lawyers struggle in managing their practices (hint: it’s not technology)
  • An essential tool that makes your law practice exponentially easier to manage (it’ll seem obvious once you find out what it is)
  • Best practices for better leveraging automation in your law practice (especially document automation)
  • Best practices for using outsourcing in your law practice (which is the #1 key to gaining more freedom)

Paperless Lawyering

How to Shed Paper and Gain Freedom

The less paper you have to process the less friction there will be in your workflows. When you can move information around nearer to the speed of light your practice will be transformed in mind-boggling ways. So, you want to make your practice as paperless as possible.

But what does this mean exactly? Well, it might mean slightly different things to different lawyers with different kinds of practices. And yet, there are best practices for creating paperless workflows that apply to every modern law firm.

Session Covers

  • The biggest misconception about creating a paperless law practice.
  • Best practices for organizing your digital documents so you can easily find anything you need in seconds
  • Which documents you MUST keep in paper form (it’s not as many as you might imagine).
  • How to leverage the power of PDFs to make your paperless workflows Ninja efficient.
  • How to smoothly transition to a more paperless practice (the answer will probably surprise you!)

Effective Marketing

How to Build Trust Effectively, Even Online

The internet created amazing opportunities for lawyers to reach potential clients at an incredibly low cost. But now, unseemly marketing tactics have started to become the norm.

Lawyers need to focus on building up their reputation (online and offline). Then, learn to how better establish trust with complete strangers online. In this session, you’ll finally discover how to use the web to get much better clients —without diminishing your valuable reputation.

Session Covers

  • The foolish marketing tactic that most lawyers adopt (which is guaranteed to tarnish your reputation)
  • Why an effective website only needs two (2) pages and shouldn’t cost more than $500 to set up.
  • What the second most important page on your website is, and how to polish it (i.e. create massive trust with complete strangers).
  • The best tool for building trust online that’s powerful and dignified (and for some reason overlooked by 95% of lawyers

Effective Email Processing

How to Tame Your Inbox

Email is now the bane of our existence: necessary, but overwhelming. Email often keeps us from accomplishing more important tasks. And it definitely stresses us out. However, there are ways to keep email in its place, so you can be much more productive, and much less stressed. This session will show you how.

Session Covers

  • Why our brains were not equipped to deal with a constant stream of emails
  • How to process emails in a way that leaves you feeling calm, confident, and in control of your life.
  • How to filter unproductive emails automatically (without spending even one minute setting up filters or fooling with technology).
  • How to spot emails sent by hackers who are waiting for you to click a booby-trapped link so they can get complete control of your computer and all of your data.
  • How to crank out responses to emails 300% faster than you’re used to.

Call Ernie About Having Him Speak