Greystone rejected the traditional law firm model and designed a modern law firm founded on the following core values:
• To create and maintain a partner-only law firm with excellent attorneys to provide our clients with superior service and direct contact with their counsel.
• To enhance profitability by reducing overhead in the same manner as our clients.
• To deliver a high-value legal product to our clients and superior service.
• To build net worth by taking risk and investing in clients and projects and create opportunities to be compensated on a basis other than the sale of billable hours.
• To provide an option for clients by providing direct access to “big firm” attorneys with superior flexibility in how we price our services.
Most traditional law firms focus on lawyers, not clients. Their practice model relies on large numbers of people billing large numbers of hours, often without regard for the value of the work to the client. We reject that model. We’ve eliminated the inherent inefficiencies of a leveraged partner/associate hierarchy, to focus exclusively on our clients. Greystone is committed to building working partnerships with our customers and delivering the highest caliber work product with entrepreneurial vigor.
A law firm cannot significantly reduce the cost of its legal service unless it reduces overhead. Otherwise reducing fees is likely to result in reduced lawyer compensation, which in turns makes it harder to attract and retain the best lawyers. Law firm overhead is primarily a function of the cost of our fixed expenses (offices, equipment, etc.) and employee headcount.
Greystone reduced the cost of its office space by relocating outside the City of Los Angeles to less expensive offices. We have small offices, limited central filing, and no central word processing, telephoning, or photocopying departments. We don’t have an expensive law library (or a law librarian); our library is accessible on-line. We keep our headcount low by outsourcing our administrative functions, eliminating staff positions (no secretaries or associates), and hiring only highly qualified legal specialists on a contract basis only when required to further reduce the cost of your legal services.
We develop partnerships with our clients. We take risk and invest in clients and projects and create opportunities to be compensated on a basis other than the sale of billable hours. The traditional hourly rate billing system rewards the wrong behavior; it has an inherent conflict between what is good for the lawyer and what is good for the client. Greystone has fundamentally changed the pricing of its legal product. We work closely with our clients to create a pricing arrangement that provides incentives to us and accomplishes our client’s desired result. We are not able to create with an innovative pricing arrangement for every matter and some clients prefer to be billed on an hourly basis. In these cases, we employ a value-based pricing system for our loyal clients that includes the ability to adjust each invoice based on the value of our legal services to our clients.