Back to News & Advice

Dylan O’Brien from The Prepared Company – Q&A Partner Feature

Q&A Channel Partner Feature by Andrew Tiganis

Dylan O’Brien is the founder and CEO of The Prepared Company and the BePrepared Vault, a white-label platform that provides Estate lawyers with a secure system to manage and distribute a client’s digital assets after they pass away.

Article Summary Points:

Tell me a bit about your own journey to where you are now?

Dylan studied law briefly at Monash University before transferring to Psychology.

Though he was able to see the benefits of a legal education, his true calling was in tech.

After studying, Dylan built his first online business in internet marketing.

One day, he was almost hit by a car. In the immediate aftermath of this near-death experience, it dawned on Dylan that his online business and associated assets would be in utter chaos if had died.

He decided he had a responsibility to address this.

Dylan quickly realized that there was a gap in legal services after calling 21 law firms and being told they did not have a solution to manage their clients’ digital assets in the event of their death.

As a response, Dylan created BePrepared.  ^

What can law firms expect when they apply for a BePrepared Vault?

Law firms can expect within the week to be able to handle their clients’ digital assets when they die.

Dylan explained that the Vault is a military-grade secure application that law firms provide their clients into which digital assets such as cryptocurrency, passwords, photos, and domain names can be stored.

As a business, you cannot see their confidential documents, but can upload documents for them and connect their Vault to other legal representatives like financial planners, accountants, and doctors.

It essentially offers clients a single, secure, touchpoint for all their most important information.  ^

Lawyers often get sold ancillary products in the legal-tech space that are not truly useful.

So, Dylan spent his time talking to Estate lawyers to understand how he could develop a product that would empower them to solve a problem they were already facing.

The challenges of the Covid-19 Pandemic accelerated the legal-tech industry and lawyers were forced to adapt to new innovations in an increasingly online world, along with strong macro pressures around digital Wills and Estates in general.

This provided Dylan with the perfect opportunity to offer BePrepared to lawyers who were struggling to manage their clients’ digital assets.  ^

Dylan emphasizes the importance of talking to lawyers and finding out what is important to them.

The legal industry is an interesting market that does not adhere to many of the typical consumer behaviours.

Dylan highly recommends the book ‘The Lean Startup’ by Eric Ries for anyone looking to get into start-ups.

The book discusses a model for validated learning which suggests that a product should be so good that it sells itself.

If a product relies on marketing, then it is not good enough. For example, BePrepared went through five iterations before finally taking off – it is a process of constantly refining and developing a truly valuable product.  ^

Legally Technology is a rapidly growing space, what do you think lawyers can do to ‘be prepared’ for dealing with these advancements and changes?

Dylan suggests that you need to know what is most important to you as a lawyer, a ‘North Star’ to guide you, and then you run every decision by that.

For example, if your ‘North Star’ is growth and client acquisition, then look at all software that you come across and consider whether it can effectively or meaningfully impact your ability to achieve that.

So, if it is client growth then having a product which helps you generate leads is worth it, if someone is selling you a document automation system but you have no clients, then you don’t need it.

Set out what you are currently trying to achieve and look at the innovative products that will meaningfully impact on that.  ^

Why did you join and what do you hope to get out of the Legally Yours Community?

Dylan joined Legally Yours to be part of a community of innovative, entrepreneurial lawyers and legal-tech companies all trying to make change in the Australian legal economy.

However, another important factor was Legally Yours CEO, Karen Finch. Karen was one of Dylan’s earliest supporters, encouraging and helping him to understand the ins-and-outs of the legal industry.  ^

How can readers get in touch with the team at The Prepared Company?

You can get into contact The Prepared Company via their website at thepreparedcompany.com or you contact Dylan directly through LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/dylannobrien.  ^

This Q&A Channel Partner Feature post does not constitute legal advice or a legal opinion on any matter discussed and, accordingly, it should not be relied upon. It should not be regarded as a comprehensive statement of the law and practice in this area.

If you have a specific question or you’d like to let us know what you need help with, head to our Talk to a Lawyer search resource and find the right lawyer for your needs.

No individual who is a member, partner, shareholder or consultant of, in or to any constituent part of Legally Yours Pty Ltd accepts or assumes responsibility, or has any liability, to any person in respect of this article.