After too many days of prepping for and traveling to Chicago courthouses for five-minute status updates, attorney Gianna Scatchell came up with an alternative—and a business. Why not pay another lawyer $100 an hour to cover those basic appearances and stick around the office to bill $300 an hour? Having a surrogate would also allow an attorney to be in two places at once when hearings are scheduled at the same time.
Her startup, Run the Call, will work something like Uber, connecting attorneys who are seeking coverage for court appearances with lawyers who can provide it—with the company taking a cut of 10 percent or less. Scatchell, 32, and her co-founders, fellow lawyers Adam Codilis, Kristopher Sage, and Jeff Harris, have raised $250,000 from friends and family. They hired San Francisco development shop Gigster to build an app, and they plan to launch in Chicago this summer.
“There’s been a few times where I wish Run the Call was ready,” Scatchell says, recalling the panic triggered in November by a last-minute motion filed while she was en route to Hawaii. “I really wish I could just hit a button instead of going through the whole rigmarole of ‘Let me send 25 text messages.’ ”