5 Benefits of Hiring Outside General Counsel

You may be tempted to hire in-house counsel for your business. Knowing your attorney is on-site gives management a sense of security and a feeling that the attorney is actively involved, especially in highly regulated industries or entities that handle a high volume of contracts. For many businesses, the in-house counsel route is not practical. The best option is often to hire outside general counsel, whether it is periodic or on an ongoing basis, to work with your business and meet its legal needs. How can outside counsel benefit your business?

More Cost-Effective

Many experienced attorneys demand high salaries and benefits. In South Florida, the most recent Florida Bar Law Office Management Survey found that attorneys with 8 years or more experience earn an average salary of $128,754, and partners earn an average of $202,397. If you are running a small business or a startup, you may be unable or unwilling to pay these salaries, not to mention the additional costs of recruiting and benefits. With outside general counsel, you need not pay the salary of an attorney and instead can pay for the hours worked or on a retainer basis and are likely to pay less overall.

More Efficient

Your business may not need a full-time attorney. What about times when your business is not involved in any legal matter? You could end up paying in-house counsel for 40 hours of service per week, even if you do not need it. Whether you choose in-house or outside counsel, you will most likely still need specialty attorneys for areas like intellectual property that require specific expertise. Knowing this, you may be inclined to look for outside general counsel, and discuss the services and time that you need.

More Expertise

A single in-house counsel’s expertise could be more limited than outside general counsel. Because outside counsel is always working with a variety of businesses, they tend to work with a higher volume of legal matters, such as corporate structure, contracts, compliance, negotiations, and litigation. The volume of legal issues that they encounter gives them broader experience. Furthermore, an outside general counsel may come with a team of attorneys that can contribute to a broader perspective and a more current knowledge of laws and regulations relevant to your business.

More Flexible

Hiring is often much easier than firing, and terminating an employee can be complex. Terminating in-house counsel comes with all of the issues of any employee termination. By contrast, if you are unhappy with an outside general counsel, it is fairly easy to move on. The Rules of Professional Conduct entitle a client to its choice of attorneys, and so clients can end an attorney relationship at their pleasure.

Better Service

Law firms maintain their motivation to impress clients, because there are no long-term commitments with attorneys, and an attorney-client relationship may be ended at the option of the client at any time. They will often make a greater effort to deliver great service and keep you happy with the partnership. Your outside general counsel knows that if she wants to win more business and referrals, she must go above and beyond every time you call for a legal question. In many ways, these attorneys will act as your personal business advisors, helping you develop short and long-term strategies to meet your goals.

Contact the law offices of Phillips & Muir to speak with a team of attorneys who will offer your Florida business the high-performance, knowledge, and expertise it needs to succeed in a competitive market. We look forward to getting acquainted with you and your business.

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Written by Phillips & Muir

Phillips & Muir

The attorneys of Gersten & Muir, P.A. are passionate advocates for businesses throughout Miami-Dade County. We provide numerous business legal services to help make your company grow and flourish. We are knowledgeable and dedicated to finding solutions that fit your company’s needs.