It’s a theme played out routinely in big law . . . A senior leader sends a memo to all the firm’s attorneys. “Over the next 12 months, you need to transition every client that didn't bill at least $x0,000 worth of legal services last year to another firm.”
That mindset is the reality of the modern legal landscape: if you’re a small business, whether a start-up or emerging company in the early stages of your business lifecycle, or an established, mature privately held business not looking for that big IPO, those big law firms are not for you.
And for most small or mid-size businesses, that’s just fine — after all, those bigger firms have bigger fees, and if you’re a smaller business, big fees are one of the things that make you hesitant to call a lawyer in the first place.
But you still need legal support, right? So where do you go?
Many businesses find themselves reaching out to boutique law firms. But there’s an issue there, too — while a boutique firm will give you more personal attention, and bill you at a more reasonable rate, most boutiques simply can’t address all of your legal needs.
As one of our clients, Ross Boyd of TruQC, put it,
“If you go away from a larger firm to a boutique firm, then you have to source and find the right attorney at the right boutique firm for your specific need. Because things happen so fast with a startup, that becomes a job in itself. Today we may need a new NDA in place, tomorrow we may need somebody that's savvy on technical review of IP, and each time we’ve got to find a firm that specializes in that, find the right attorney, tell them our story, and get them ramped up, just so they can do the work for us. At least with the big firm I could just call up and say, ‘Can you give me your person over in IP?’”
Not to get too Goldilocks on you, but at Stock Legal, we’ve built a law firm to hit that just-right sweet spot between too-small boutique firms and too-big big law firms. What we’ve learned is that there are an amazing number of businesses whose needs fall in that middle ground.
We’re small enough to give you that personal attention, and we place a huge emphasis on relationships — on really getting to know you, your business, and your needs and goals. We do that, because we want to be in it with you for the long haul.
This means that, unlike big law firms that are set up to maximize the amount of profit on every single transaction, we’re not interested in trying to make the most money we can on any one deal today. We know that if we can be super-efficient during the early years for our smaller clients (like offering fixed fees), they will have more money to invest in their business, and as their business grows, they’ll come back to us, and we can continue to grow with them.
While we don't do everything the big law firms do, we’re big enough to be able to specialize in those general corporate services that a business owner needs on a regular basis, as well as many other services you may need throughout the business lifecycle, like mergers and acquisitions, intellectual property, banking, commercial real estate, and estate planning. Our clients range from pre-revenue start-ups, to mature operating companies with tens or hundreds of millions of dollars in annual revenue, and everything in between.
If you need something a business owner doesn’t need on a regular basis, like help with a litigation, employee benefits, immigration or international law issue, we have relationships with other firms throughout the world, so you don’t have to do the research yourself, or cross your fingers and hope you’re getting someone who can actually provide what you need.
And when you grow large enough that you need a bigger law firm — when it’s time for that IPO, for example — we’ll be here to help you find a great firm that we believe in that is philosophically aligned with who you are, based on our relationship with you and what we know what you want and need.
And we’ll be cheering for you all the way.