Free Resource by Craig Kaiser & Greg Phillips of Phillips | Kaiser.

What Is The Best Money Spent With A Business Lawyer?
Learn how to cut your business legal expenses by as much as 75%!
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Free Resource: What Is The Best Money Spent With A Business Lawyer?

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Content

  • Legal Costs for Business Being Acquired Icon
    Chapter 1

    Most Important Factor In Evaluating Hiring A Business Lawyer

  • Why Would A Company Sell 51% and not 100% Icon
    Chapter 2

    Is It Worth Paying $1,000 Per Hour For Business Attorneys?

  • Top business lawyers Houston
    Chapter 3

    What Do Top Business Lawyers Do For Business Owners That General Lawyers Don't or Can't Do?

  • Houston Business Attorney icon
    Chapter 4

    How Do I Know If My Business Lawyer Is Good Enough Or Is The Right Choice?

  • Business Attorneys
    Chapter 5

    Comparing Legal Fees

  • Best Business Attorneys Houston
    Chapter 6

    Benefits of General Counsel Services

Chapter 1

What Is The Best Money Spent With A Business Lawyer?

According to a survey of corporate legal departments, relationships were the most important factor in evaluating the hiring of outside legal counsel, followed by:

If these factors matter in the business of law regarding the hiring of outside legal counsel, I am confident these factors are equally or more important to business owners seeking a lawyer.

Lee Change, Chief Litigation Officer of Newegg, Inc., said, “We hire lawyers, not law firms.”

So indeed, it comes down to likability and results followed by a host of other important qualifications.

Craig Kaiser, General PArtner, Attorney
Craig Kaiser, Founding Partner, Attorney

We made it easy to get a basic understanding of mergers and acquisitions. Our comprehensive guide will help you.

Craig Kaiser, General PArtner, Attorney
Craig Kaiser, Founding Partner, Attorney

Hiring some to be an inside counsel can be costly and unaffordable. General Counsel Services offers an alternative.

Gregory Phillips, Attorney
Gregory Phillips, Founding Partner, Attorney

Top 20 Reasons Startups Fail --- Yes, Legal Challenges is one of the top 20 reasons.

Gregory Phillips, Attorney
Gregory Phillips, Founding Partner, Attorney

6 reasons we should protect intellectual property.

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Chapter 2

Is It Worth Paying $1,000 Per Hour For Business Attorneys?

Business Insider says, “Like a sick person, a company facing litigation is willing to spend big bucks to get out of trouble. It’s entirely justifiable, and lawyers are only too happy to oblige, billing clients for every minute worked, and then some.”

As an attorney, it’s more common than you would think. An example is the business owner who was charged 26 hours for a single day. Or the legal bill that pretty much represented 52 all-nighters in a row! Or how about paying more than $1,000 for an hour of legal advice?

Other dangers of attorneys spending your money include:

  • Double-billing
  • Padded hours
  • Overhead
  • Trivial tasks
  • Expense accounts
  • Exhorbitant hourly rates

At Phillips | Kaiser we believe there is a better way for affordable, accountable, and results-driven legal representation.

Getting the right fee arrangement and service plan customized for the specific legal project at hand will be the best money spent for a business lawyer.

Chapter 3

What Do Top Business Lawyers Do For Business Owners That General Lawyers Don't or Can't Do?

A business lawyer (also called a Corporate Lawyer) deals with several specialty areas of law, unlike some attorneys who focus on basic business legal tasks such as forming your company. There are also some lawyers who focus only on small businesses and startups, while others focus on large enterprises.

The specialty areas a business lawyer can help a business owner excel in include:

  • Contracts

    Negotiating deals

  • Employment agreements

    Handling issues relating to employment

  • Mergers and Acquisitions
  • Intellectual Property (IP)

    Anything having to do with protecting intellectual property, that is intangible (something you can’t touch, like an idea).

  • Corporate Governance
  • Compliance

    Assist with any legal issues related to government regulations.

Phillips | Kaiser

"Getting the right lawyer will be the best money spent with a business lawyer."

--- CRAIG KAISER, ATTORNEY

Chapter 4

How Do I Know If My Business Lawyer Is Good Enough Or Is The Right Choice?

According to ValuePenguin, Houston has over 12,670 lawyers. The good news is there are plentiful lawyers from which to choose. The bad news is it could become costly in time and money if you choose the wrong lawyer.

Choosing the right lawyer is a little like choosing the right doctor. You don’t see a radiologist if all you have is a bad cold and need a general physician. The same is true of choosing a business lawyer. It’s not good enough just to get a good lawyer. You need the right one.

We recommend you start by determining the type of lawyer you need.

A “Corporate lawyer” is a term more often used by attorneys than clients. Enterprise or large businesses with big in-house legal budgets will be familiar with the term, but smaller to medium-sized businesses probably aren’t as familiar with the term.

“Corporate” is synonymous with “commercial” or “business.” When the term is used by attorneys, it typically means a lawyer who works on business transactions --- forming companies, contracts, intellectual property, compliance issues, corporate governance, helping raise capital, merging or selling businesses, breaking businesses apart, creating joint ventures, and other important things that involve activities that happen outside the courtroom.

Since you’ve read this far, you have probably noticed that I have predominantly used the term “business lawyer” in this article. I also use it with clients since most people aren’t familiar with the term “corporate lawyer.”

As for the words “lawyer” or “attorney,” they mean the same thing.

A business lawyer (also called a Corporate Lawyer) deals with several specialty areas of law, unlike some attorneys who focus on basic business legal tasks such as forming your company. There are also some lawyers who focus only on small businesses and startups, while others focus on large enterprises.

The specialty areas a business lawyer can help a business owner excel in include:

  • Contracts

    Negotiating deals

  • Employment agreements

    Handling issues relating to employment

  • Mergers and Acquisitions
  • Intellectual Property (IP)

    Anything having to do with protecting intellectual property, that is intangible (something you can’t touch, like an idea).

  • Corporate Governance
  • Compliance

    Assist with any legal issues related to government regulations.

Cut your legal expenses
Cut Your Legal Expenses By As Much As
75%
!
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Chapter 5

Comparing Legal Fees

Every Business Needs A Corporate Lawyer.

If you are a business owner, you don’t need to spend a lot of money or hire one in-house. We recommend choosing a corporate lawyer who is experienced, skilled, trustworthy, and one that you feel right about building a relationship.

Be careful when comparing fees from one attorney to another. Be diligent in learning what you are getting for the legal fees.

To better compare one legal services provider to another, it is important to understand how they will bill you.

The three most common fee structures are flat fees, monthly retainers, and hourly fees.

Phillips | Kaiser

"... the three most common fee structures are flat fees, monthly retainers, and hourly fees."

--- CRAIG KAISER, ATTORNEY

Flat Fees

Many business lawyers will charge a flat fee for procedural business services, such as drafting a standard contract or setting up your business’s structure. This may be an efficient way for businesses to get legal counsel for basic business decisions.

Monthly Retainers

Monthly retainers are probably the most economical fee structure for legal services from business lawyers. A monthly retainer involves legal services providers offering the option to pay in advance for services you use throughout the month in the form of a monthly retainer.

Monthly retainers can help business owners determine their legal budgets in advance. This is also a fee structure advantageous to businesses that would prefer not to worry about billing by the minute.

Hourly Rate

The legal standard is an hourly rate, which can often conflict with the financial goals of your business. Many lawyers in traditional law firms are incentivized to bill as many hours as possible to increase their profits. This is particularly true for the vast majority of traditional law firms which employ an organizational strategy known as “leverage.”

What Is Leverage?

For a business, the concept of leverage means that a business has borrowed money, typically from the bank or investors, to purchase assets. This is not the case in the legal profession. For lawyers, leverage means the delegation of client work from more senior partners to the associates beneath them. More specifically, leverage, also known as “gearing,” refers to the average ratio between associates (all non-partners) and partners (total partners, including both equity and non-equity partners).

For leveraged law firms, the practice and pursuit of maximizing leverage mean that they can make much more money in fees and billable hours by putting less expensive, junior associates on a project while still billing for high-cost “supervising” partners.

A Better Alternative

A better alternative to hourly rates is General Counsel Services that utilize mainly monthly retainers, and in some instances, flat fee arrangements that often save business owners 40 to 60% in legal fees!

Chapter 6

Benefits of General Counsel Services

When you have a business lawyer who understands your business, they will help you make good decisions around legal strategy and priorities. Think of this lawyer as the quarterback for your business. They have the insight to see the issues and risks and present the right approach to company management and draft legal documents (though usually not lawsuits).

General Counsel Services provide expert legal personnel to the client site. This reduces the burden of bureaucracy on the client firm while significantly reducing legal liability and risk exposure. Expert on-demand legal counsel is readily available. High-quality technical work can be accomplished without the hiring, vetting, onboarding, and training necessary for inside counsel. Unlike outside counsel provided by a traditional, leveraged law firm, fees are also significantly reduced.

For leveraged law firms, the practice and pursuit of maximizing leverage mean that they can make more money in fees and billable hours. As a result, lawyers themselves actively promote the pursuit of leverage within the industry which can sometimes put the financial interest of a leveraged law firm in conflict with those of the business owner.

General Counsel Services firms have no such leverage. The lawyer you contract from a General Counsel Services firm is the lawyer you will be working with. No junior associates or others will be billed to your project.

The Benefits of General Counsel Services

  • ORGANIZATION

    The ability to operate at a senior level in the company’s organization.

  • COMPANY POLICIES

    A close understanding of the company’s policies, strategies, and objectives.

  • COMPANY OPERATING PROCESSES

    A close understanding of the company’s operating methods, processes, products, suppliers, and customers.

  • MANAGE LEGAL RISK

    The ability to manage legal risk, to analyze the company’s strategies and to identify legal issues, and to develop plans and programs to manage and, if possible, to avoid legal problems that arise.

  • PROVIDE SOLUTIONS

    The timely delivery of work of high technical quality that also provides practical solutions which meet the company’s business goals.

  • WORK WITH COMPANY PERSONNEL, SUPPLIERS, & CUSTOMERS

    The ability to work closely and co-operatively with company personnel, suppliers, and customers as may be required.

  • KNOWLEDGE AND SKILLS

    The ability to add value to the efforts of internal clients, whether by saving money, avoiding losses, solving problems, achieving business objectives by using knowledge and skills to improve the way the company manages its legal risks and pursues its legal rights and opportunities.

  • MANAGE EXTERNAL LEGAL SERVICES

    The ability to manage external legal services for extraordinary legal issues that arise (e.g., litigation, public/private securities offerings, bankruptcy) in a cost-effective way that achieves optimum benefits for the company.

See The Benefits of General Counsel Services for Your Business

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