Frequently Asked Questions
- Why do I need a corporate lawyer?
- Why can’t I just use a Web service like LegalZoom or DocStoc?
- Assuming I need a good corporate lawyer, why should I engage Walker Corporate Law?
- Why are the legal fees at Walker Corporate Law so much lower than the big firms?
- What kind of corporate legal services do you provide?
- Do you provide any other kinds of legal services?
- How much will my project cost?
- How do I get started?
You need a corporate lawyer to protect you and watch your back. A well-drafted agreement is like a good insurance policy in the event of a dispute or litigation. Indeed, we live in a litigious society, and it is prudent to retain a good corporate lawyer to make sure you don’t get blindsided. A good corporate lawyer will also provide solid advice and judgment, identify significant risks and help negotiate key terms.
You can — but as the saying goes, “you get what you pay for.” If your particular project or transaction is significant, it makes sense to hire a good lawyer for the same reason it makes sense to see a good doctor if you’re very sick. Moreover, Web services like LegalZoom or DocStoc are not law firms and do not provide legal advice; they simply provide fill-in-the-blank forms, which often have no context and are not tailored to your particular situation. Indeed, the role of a good corporate lawyer is more than just providing a form — he or she is a trusted advisor (a consigliere), who will strategize with you and help you think through key business and legal issues.
As we discuss on the “About the Firm” page, Walker Corporate Law is a different kind of law firm. We have created a new business model designed for entrepreneurs and startups looking for an alternative to the big law firms. The big firms are geared for the big fish — the clients generating huge, recurring legal fees (such as venture capital firms and public companies). Accordingly, many entrepreneurs and startups don’t get the attention they’re looking for at the big firms — and often find that their work has been assigned to young associates with little or no experience. At Walker Corporate Law, we only have senior lawyers with 10-25 years of experience handling your project — and all of our lawyers have been trained at the big firms. You thus get the best of both worlds.
We don’t compete on price: any law firm can charge less than the firm down the road. As we discuss in this introductory video, however, the traditional law firm business model is broken — which has caused legal fees to sky-rocket over the past ten years. For example, there are lawyers at certain major national law firms billing-out at $1,000+ per hour, and first-year associates billing-out at $300+ per hour. The principal reason for this is one word: overhead. The big law firms are simply passing onto their clients their huge overhead costs — things like expensive office space (often with artwork and dramatic views), large support staffs (e.g., assistants, librarians and file clerks) and, of course, extremely high-paid young associates. We have created a new business model which strips-out the huge overhead costs of the traditional law firm and passes the substantial savings onto our clients.
We provide a broad range of corporate legal services — from idea to exit — i.e., from startup counseling and general corporate matters to angel and venture capital financings to mergers, acquisitions and sales of businesses. Unlike most law firms that have many different departments and specialties, we only do one thing: draft and negotiate corporate documents. You can find a complete list of our services on the legal services page.
No, we only provide corporate legal services — which we think is the key to our success. We do, however, work very closely with an all-star team of unaffiliated lawyers to provide whatever additional legal services are necessary. For example, if we need to structure an acquisition, we will bring-on a strong tax lawyer, who will work seamlessly with our team; or perhaps there is a tricky employee benefits issue – in which case, we will bring-on special employee benefits counsel. The appeal of this approach is that we can cherry-pick the top legal specialists and utilize them on an as-needed basis, which is efficient and cost-effective.
It depends. Scott will get on the phone with you at no charge and discuss your project and the billing options. For certain matters, for example, we may be able to provide a fixed or flat fee, which means that no matter how long it takes us to complete the project, you only pay one fee. This can be very appealing to entrepreneurs and startups on a tight budget. Other matters may be more appropriately billed on an hourly basis — in which case, Scott will give you an estimate up-front, and we will do our best to meet such estimate. Regardless of the arrangement, our goal is to make sure you are happy — and to ensure that there are no end-of-the-month surprises regarding invoices.
The first step is to send Scott an e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) to set-up a free telephonic consultation. We can then start representing you or your company as soon as (i) we establish that there are no potential conflicts of interest (e.g., that we do not represent a party on the other side of your transaction); and (ii) you execute our standard engagement letter and pay the requisite retainer deposit.