Selecting a Name for a Law Firm

Gair, Gair, Conason, Rubinowitz, Bloom, Hershenhorn, Steigman & Mackauf is a hugely successful law firm in New York City. It might be the most difficult law firm name in New York City to remember too. The law firm has been around for 100 years now, and just about everybody calls it Gair Gair. That’s far easier to remember, regardless of the fact that the original two Gairs and Mr. Conason are now deceased.

Get it Right the First Time

Indeed, first impressions do matter. In one form or another, you may have heard that you won’t have a second opportunity to make a first impression. That’s why the decision on what to name a law firm is critical. Once you make that decision, you’ll need to learn whether the name you have chosen is permissible with the governing body for attorneys in your state. If it isn’t, you’re back to naming the baby again.

Short and Sweet

What sounds better? What is easier to pronounce? Hall Holmberg seems better and is definitely easier to pronounce than Hall, Holmberg, Meyer, Roach, Sloan & Fisher. Even the Hall Holmberg lawyers probably say that they work at Hall Holmberg. In legal circles, the law firm is almost always referred to as Hall Holmberg. For purposes of convenience, many law firms with five or more partners have already shortened their names. Some law firms don’t even include any of the partners’ names in the law firm’s name. For example, a personal injury law firm in Milwaukee might want the name of Great Lakes Personal Injury, or a criminal defense firm in New Orleans might want to call itself Gulf Coast Criminal Defense. A geographic designation coupled with a description of the of practice certainly eliminates the name issues that arise when partners come and go. Again, you’ll need to check with the governing body for attorneys in your state as to whether such a name might be permissible.

Other Things to Think About

The name of your law firm is going to be on everything at your business location, even the front door. Keep it short and sweet. Keep the fact in mind that clients are going to see your law firm’s name when they’re away from your office too. If you’re forming a partnership, should the first name in that law firm’s name is one of those European names with four syllables and one vowel? Absolutely not. Put a simpler name ahead of that four syllable European name. That’s going to make your firm far easier for potential clients to find. If your new law firm is successful, it’s likely to grow, so you need to contemplate the possibility of adding a name or two, and be sure to always retain the name of at least one of the founding lawyers. You’re likely to have a website too, so keep simplicity in mind for a website address.

For a variety of reasons, what might be the best form of a name for your law firm might not work for that firm across the hall. If there are numerous lawyers involved, it’s impossible to please everybody, and no choice is going to be the perfect choice either. Many lawyers who are full partners in law firm don’t see their names on the firm’s doors anymore. They’re able to check their egos outside of that door before they enter the premises. We all know how slow the law is to change, but it appears as if the name shortening trend will be continuing.

Chris

Chris

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