New legal services model offers virtual general counsel | Financial Post

A new legal services firm, Avokka Virtual General Counsel, is offering part-time general counsel for mid-sized companies ($10M – $75M) who think they can’t afford one.

Launched in mid-February, Toronto-based Avokka also offers experienced counsel to boost in-house legal teams who need additional help for special problems and projects.

“Avokka offers only the services of lawyers with 20 or more years of experience, both in BigLaw and as legal executives,” says Andrew Foti, Avokka’s founder and CEO, who sees his professionals as virtual extensions of the management team. “They deliver GC-type coverage part-time on a retainer basis on-site and offsite in a cost-efficient way on a low overhead platform.”

Avokka, which operates on a fixed-fee basis, intends to operate with a relatively small client base, allowing its team to acquire deep knowledge of the companies they work with. Foti says his clients will encounter only senior professionals and will not be working with junior lawyers to whom work has been delegated.

“Our service is symbiotic with rather than competitive with law firms, who also have been supportive of our initiative,” Foti says.

Otherwise, there’s at least one way in which Avokka is quite unique.

“We’ll even fire ourselves if the client is using too much of us consistently, and have them do a search for a GC when they get to a point that they need one,” Foti says.


Julius Melnitzer | Financial Post | February 19, 2014 11:30 AM ET

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