Why CGS3?

When it comes to a commercial real estate transaction, a lot can go wrong. The stakes are high. The issues are complicated. Deals move quickly. Unfortunately, even well intentioned lawyers can add unwanted complexity, stress and cost to doing business. Some practice law in isolation, failing to consider the overall business context of a deal. Some focus only on what is in front of them, without taking into account the long-term impact that deals can have on overall business strategies and outcomes. Others work at firms where fees are not driven by client value, but instead by internal pressures related to overhead and profitability.

CGS3 brings a new legal dimension to commercial real estate. At every stage of the commercial real estate life cycle, we help our clients maximize their investments without sacrificing their legal interests, business relationships or bottom line.

Our mission is simple: help you, our clients, make decisions that empower you to execute on your immediate priorities and create innovative strategies that empower you to achieve your long-term objectives. Learn more.

What experience does CGS3 bring to the table?

Our seasoned attorneys understand the intricate, fast-moving world of commercial real estate. The majority of our lawyers are “Big Law” veterans with years of experience in handling complex real estate transactions and matters across all asset classes and market sectors. We leverage off that experience and combine it with a forward-thinking business model to help you maximize your investments without compromising your legal interests, your business relationships or your profitability. With low overhead, flexibility and an entrepreneurial spirit, we are a lean and efficient boutique law firm, avoiding unnecessary costs while delivering a best-in-class experience to you. Learn more.

What services does CGS3 offer?

CGS3’s key areas of practice span the entire real estate life cycle:
• Acquisitions/disposition
• Entity formation
• Financing
• Design, construction/development
• Asset & property management
• Leasing:
          • • Office
          • • Industrial
          • • Retail
          • • Medical
          • • Life science
• Litigation/disputes
• Distressed properties/workouts
• Landlord-tenant disputes, avoidance & resolution
• Tax planning
• Land Use/Environmental/Natural Resources (“LER”)
Learn more.

Where is CGS3 doing deals?

CGS3 does business in California and around the country. Among the states where you will find our work:

  • Alabama
  • Alaska
  • Arizona
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Hawaii
  • Illinois
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Maryland
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • Ohio
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Virginia
  • Washington
What is the history of CGS3?

Formed in 2013, CGS3 offers a lean, client-centric approach to commercial real estate law.

Our five founders were longtime partners and “Big Law” veterans who saw an opportunity to create a forward-thinking business model aimed at quickly responding to deals of all sizes, scopes and complexities.

While many attorneys are reluctant to leave major law firms and strike out on their own, the founders of CGS3 seized this opportunity as a way to break away from the way legal services are typically provided. We brought with us deep experience, innovative ideas and strong client relationships.

Our timing was perfect. In our brief history, we have added an impressive lineup of top commercial real estate attorneys and have played a key role in thousands of deals locally, regionally and nationally.

Involved in all stages of investment and development, CGS3 works with all asset classes. Our team of lawyers and paralegals focuses exclusively on commercial real estate. Together, we have created a successful, highly innovative business model that can quickly respond to emerging market trends and clients’ changing needs and demands.

Where is CGS3 located?

We have offices in San Diego and Los Angeles:

12750 High Bluff Drive, Suite 250
San Diego, California 92130
Phone: 858.367.7676
Fax: 858.345.1991

11601 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 1600
Los Angeles, California 90025
Phone: 424.320.9254

Learn more.

Why would I want to join CGS3?

For multiple reasons—including economic pressures, shifting demographics, arcane compensation structures and excess capacity – the legal landscape in this country has changed dramatically, resulting in an increasing number of attorneys leaving “Big Law” firms to strike a new path by either joining or establishing smaller, boutique firms.

CGS3 is able to attract top talent by adapting and addressing “the 4 Cs”:

  • Collegiality. While frequently undervalued in the large environment of “Big Law”, professional support and a congenial work environment are fundamental tenets to a successful business culture. Attorneys who work together in a tightly knit environment truly understand and value each other’s practice areas and skill sets. Many successful smaller firms have rejected traditional “Big Law” compensation metrics (like origination credit and hours billed) which can be divisive and incentivize bad behavior.  By hewing to that old maxim that “a rising tide lifts all boats,” as well as by employing a collaborative team approach, smaller firms foster greater accountability, communication and camaraderie than their “Big Law” counterparts.
  • Control.  “Big Law” partners and associates can feel disconnected from the decision making process of law firm management, becoming a cog in a revenue-generating machine.  Today’s breakout law firms often reject formal management and instead empower each lawyer to be actively engaged in the management of the firm. Smaller firms are also eschewing the traditional approach of associate advancement.  Rather than focus single-mindedly on hours and billables, successful boutique firms are embracing the use of flex-time, part-time and non-partner track lawyers.  Given these priorities—which are based as much on the quality of life as the quantity of monthly charges to clients–smaller firms can pitch potential recruits by emphasizing how attorneys retain personal control over their own career track, fee arrangements, scheduling and work-life balance without negative consequences.  The simple translation is that successful small firm lawyers own their life instead of ceding it to the firm.
  • Compensation.  The key here is meritocracy. Smaller firms can offer highly competitive pay because of the elimination of legacy costs, lower overhead and a rejection of “Big Law’s” lock-step compensation grid. By rewarding productivity and good behavior, smaller firms can cultivate cultures where success is determined by the group – not the individual.
  • Conflicts.  With thousands of lawyers opening new matters and the obsession with chasing high-value, price-insensitive work, “Big Law” lawyers can spend countless hours identifying and clearing conflicts. However, by their very nature and by opening fewer matters, small firms generate a smaller number of conflicts and may be able to commence a new engagement much faster than their “Big Law” counterparts.  Moreover, by limiting the scope of practice to one area, a small law firm can avoid the unintended pitfalls of trying to be all things to all people.  When conflicts do emerge, the resolution is determined by what is best for the respective clients involved, not what is best for an individual partner’s collections.
    Learn more