A new kind of law firm
CGS3 is bucking long-time firm practice, and it’s thriving.
By Katie Thisdell
What? No hard-and-fast billing requirements for attorneys? No fiercely guarding your clients from colleagues?
What kind of a law firm is this?
A very successful one.
Founded just three years ago, San Diego-based Crosbie Gliner Schiffman Southard & Swanson LLP is an innovative new type of law firm. Focusing on a lean, client-first approach, CGS3 is proving to be a legal powerhouse for commercial real estate clients throughout the country.
“We probably are the biggest real estate department in San Diego now,” said founding partner Sean Southard. “But we try not to let numbers and head-count be our identity. Our identity is really how we do it, not the numbers we do it with.”
CGS3 is a mix of the best of Big Law and boutique law, filling an important niche in the local commercial real estate market.
“I think the Big Law model doesn’t work for a lot of clients,” said Evelyn Heidelberg, one of the firm’s newest partners, who is heading the new land-use and environmental-resources practice group. “There’s market demand for the leaner, smaller, specialized law firms.”
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