Law Firm Business Codes Explained 🔍 What You Need to Know

Have you ever wondered what the Business Code is for a law firm? Finding the correct code for your business can be crucial for tracking and analyzing industry data, as well as for tax purposes.

In this article, we will explore the two primary classifications used in North America – NAICS & SIC – to identify the appropriate Business Code for law firms.

The North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) and Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) are both used to classify businesses based on their primary economic activity.

The NAICS is the newer of the two classifications, with its latest revision released in 2017, while the SIC system has not been updated since 1987.

As of 2023, the NAICS codes consist of 20 sectors and over 1,000 industries, whereas the SIC codes have 10 divisions and 1,005 industries.

In this article, we will explore the different codes assigned to law firms under each of these systems and provide some additional information on how they are used. Let’s dive into the world of business codes and discover the right one for law firms.

What is a Business Code?

A Business Code, such as the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) and Standard Industrial Classification (SIC), categorizes businesses based on industry type. Law firms have their own unique codes within these classification systems, which are used for statistical purposes and by government agencies.

What is a NAICS Code

What is a NAICS Code?

A NAICS code is a numeric code used to classify businesses by industry, based on the type of goods or services provided. It stands for North American Industry Classification System and is a common way for businesses to identify their industry classification for statistical purposes.

NAICS Code Meaning

The numbering system for NAICS codes works in the following manner:

  • Numbers 1 and 2:  Indicate the economic sector in which the company is located
  • Number 3: You will find the company’s sub-sector
  • Number 4: Indicates the industry group that the company is a member of
  • Number 5: The company’s particular industry is identified
  • Number 6: The national industry of the company is identified

As a result, every NAICS code relates to an individual business and describes what it does

NAICS Code Meaning

NAICS Code for Law Firm

The NAICS (North American Industry Classification System) code for law firms is 541110. This code is specifically for Offices of Lawyers and encompasses all types of legal services provided by law firms.

Other related NAICS codes that may apply to law firms include 541199 which covers All Other Legal Services like patent and trademark filing, and 541191 which covers Title Abstract and Settlement Offices.

Here’s a list of all the NAICS codes that may apply to law firms:

Offices of Lawyers 541110
Title Abstract and Settlement Offices 541191
All Other Legal Services 541199

It’s important for law firms to properly classify their business under the correct NAICS code as it can impact data analysis and government reporting requirements.

What is a SIC Code?

A SIC (Standard Industrial Classification) code is a system used to classify businesses based on their primary activity. It was developed by the US government in the 1930s and has since been replaced by the NAICS code. The SIC code is still sometimes referenced for historical purposes or by industries that haven’t transitioned to the NAICS system.

SIC Code Meaning

SIC Code Meaning

The SIC codes have four digits and there are more than 1,000 unique codes nationally recognized.

  • The first two digits are used to identify the major group, which is then further divided into 12 groups at higher levels
  • The third digit reveals a little more detail – more specific industry groupings
  • The fourth digit shows the industry sector

The official US Standard Industrial Classification code is always four digits; however, some private companies use six, seven, or eight-digit versions of these codes for more specific marketing or research.

SIC Code for Law Firm

The NAICS code for a law firm depends on the firm’s specific practice areas. The primary NAICS code for legal services is 541110, but there are several others that may apply based on the types of cases the law firm handles. Here is a list of all NAICS codes for law firms:

Legal Services 541110
All Other Legal Services 541199
Offices of Certified Public Accountants 541211
Tax Preparation Services 541213
Payroll Services 541214
Other Accounting Services 541219
Architectural Services 541310
Landscape Architectural Services 541320
Engineering Services 541330
Drafting Services 541340
Building Inspection Services 541350
Geophysical Surveying and Mapping Services 541360
Surveying and Mapping (except Geophysical) Services 541370
Testing Laboratories 541380
Interior Design Services 541410
Industrial Design Services 541420
Graphic Design Services 541430
Other Specialized Design Services 541490
Custom Computer Programming Services 541511
Computer Systems Design Services 541512
Computer Facilities Management Services 541513
Other Computer Related Services 541519
Administrative Management and General Management Consulting Services 541611
Human Resources Consulting Services 541612
Marketing Consulting Services 541613
Process, Physical Distribution, and Logistics Consulting Services 541614
Other Management Consulting Services 541618
Environmental Consulting Services 541620
Other Scientific and Technical Consulting Services 541690
Research and Development in the Social Sciences and Humanities 541720
Advertising Agencies 541810
Public Relations Agencies 541820
Media Buying Agencies 541830
Media Representatives 541840
Outdoor Advertising 541850
Direct Mail Advertising 541860
Advertising Material Distribution Services 541870
Other Services Related to Advertising 541890
Marketing Research and Public Opinion Polling 541910
Photography Studios, Portrait 541921
Commercial Photography 541922
Translation and Interpretation Services 541930
Veterinary Services 541940
All Other Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services 541990

What is the Difference Between NAICS and SIC Codes?

The main difference between NAICS and SIC codes is that NAICS codes are based on a production-oriented approach, while SIC codes are based on a market-oriented approach. In other words, NAICS codes classify businesses based on the activities that they perform, while SIC codes classify businesses based on the products or services that they produce or provide.

Another key difference is that NAICS codes provide more detail than SIC codes, which makes them more suitable for industries that are constantly evolving.


In this article, we discussed the Business Codes (NAICS & SIC) for Law Firms and how they are used to classify businesses in the United States. We learned that these codes can help law firms identify their target market, improve their marketing efforts, and access certain government programs and resources.

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