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Big or Boutique? Why Startup Businesses Should Choose a Smaller Boutique Firm over a Big Law Firm

Updated: Dec 31

A coffee cup with the words "Spiller Law" and the Spiller Law trademarked logo
Spiller Law is a boutique entertainment and business law practice in San Francisco

When it comes to choosing a law firm for your startup business, entrepreneurs and founders might be tempted to go with a big, well-known firm. But there are plenty of reasons why a smaller boutique firm can be a better choice. Here are four important factors to consider:

1) Access: When you work with a smaller firm, you have direct access to the attorneys who will be handling your case. You can easily get in touch with them and get answers to any questions you have. With a big firm, you’re likely to feel like just another client, and getting timely responses can be difficult.

2) Affordability: Boutique firms are often more affordable than their larger counterparts. They don’t have the same overhead costs, so they can pass those savings on to their clients.

3) Relationship: The relationship between attorney and client is important – especially for startups who might need more hand-holding through the legal process. When you work with a smaller firm, you can build a rapport with your attorney and feel confident that they have your best interests at heart.

4) Trust: Startups need to be able to trust their lawyers implicitly. When you choose a smaller boutique firm, you can be sure that the attorneys there are dedicated to providing quality service and forming lasting relationships with their clients.

Access - When you work with a smaller boutique law firm, you have direct access to the attorneys who will be working on your case. This means that you can ask questions and get answers in a timely manner.

Working with a smaller boutique law firm provides the advantage of directly accessing their attorneys. They are available if you need to ask questions or get valuable insights regarding your case. This gives you the opportunity to make informed decisions quickly, as you are in direct contact with the people who have the best understanding of your case. You can also rest assured that your questions and matters will not be lost in a pile of paperwork due to their smaller size. The lack of bureaucracy and hierarchies provides an edge that is often missing from bigger firms, where communication between layers can cause delays and hiccups due to the higher volume of clients.

Affordability - Smaller firms are often more affordable than their larger counterparts, making them a great option for startups who need to watch their bottom line.

When it comes to the crunch of legal costs, working with a smaller boutique law firm can be much more economical than with a larger well-known firm. Often the fees at these smaller firms are far below the rates of bigger players on the market but without sacrificing quality or commitment to your case. This makes them ideal for startups who need top-notch legal advice while keeping an eye on their spending. Because they are a smaller organization, they generally have fewer overheads, and passing this along to their clients means higher value for their money.

Relationship - The relationship between client and attorney is often more personal at a smaller firm, which can make it easier to build trust and rapport.

Building trust and establishing a relationship with your small business lawyer is of utmost importance, as you are entrusting them to guide you through the intricacies of legal matters. Working with a small boutique firm will provide startups with access to attorneys who can become more than just advisors; they can become trusted friends and confidants. Developing a relationship with your attorney over time will allow your attorney to understand better your business's needs, goals, and objectives, and will allow them to stand by your side through any situation. Having a long-standing relationship with a small business lawyer will give startup clients the guidance they need while providing peace of mind that they are being taken care of by someone they can count on.

Trust - Because of the personal nature of the relationships at a smaller firm, clients often feel like they can trust their attorneys more than if they were working with a large firm.

Trust is a major factor in choosing an attorney to represent your legal needs, so it's not surprising that clients often feel more comfortable trusting their attorneys when they’re working with a smaller law firm. That's because only by establishing a relationship can one build a trusting attorney-client connection in the first place. At a smaller firm, there is typically less red tape and fewer layers involved which allows for easier and quicker communication between client and attorney. That direct connection leads to better understanding between both parties, as well as more open communication regarding possible solutions or strategies for strategy formation and review. Additionally, since small firms have only a limited number of clients (as opposed to large firms), this gives you access to your own dedicated team who can provide personalized attention; the kind of quality service reflective of someone genuinely investing in you, your situation and helping to achieve the best outcome possible.


When choosing a law firm to work with, it is important to consider all of your options. While a large law firm may have more resources, a smaller boutique law firm can offer you advantages in terms of access, affordability, relationship, and trust. At Spiller Law, we are committed to providing our clients with the best possible experience. We understand the importance of building trust and rapport, and we work hard to make sure that our clients feel comfortable and confident working with us. If you're considering working with a smaller boutique law firm, we encourage you to schedule a free consultation with us so that we can discuss how we can best meet your needs.

Spiller Law is an advisor to startup businesses, entertainment and media companies, and artists. Feel free to schedule a free consultation.


Spiller Law is a San Francisco business, entertainment, and estate planning law firm. We serve clients in the San Francisco Bay Area, Silicon Valley, Los Angeles, and California. Feel free to arrange a free consultation using the Schedule Appointment link on our website. For other questions, feel free to call our offices at 415-991-7298.


The information provided in this article is for general informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice or opinion. Readers are advised to consult with their legal counsel for specific advice.


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