Warhurst Law Offices solves legal problems in property, business and family matters, including
Bill Warhurst is a multi-disciplinary lawyer who combines more than 35 years’ experience in key business practice areas to craft ideal solutions to legal challenges, both simple and complex. Bill encourages clients to focus on practical resolutions, but he can aggressively pursue all legal remedies when needed.
Call 650-288-3390 to learn why an attorney with broad experience can give you the best possible results.
Multi-Disciplinary Law. Few lawyers devote their legal careers to solving legal challenges for businesses and families. Instead, most lawyers focus on a particular area of law early in their careers. They become a “divorce lawyer” or a “civil litigator” or a “corporate attorney.” In my experience, though, clients do not truly want a divorce, or a lawsuit, or a corporation per se. I believe clients want thoughtful, feasible solutions to their problems with the best results taking into account all expenses, including their lawyer’s fees. Clients with marital disputes want prudent action to resolve or minimize all disputes with their partner. People who suffer a loss want redress, and people who are sued want to pay no more than is truly proper on the facts as well as on the law. Folks starting a business do not need a corporation so much as they need to protect their personal assets from the risk their nascent business will fail.
I was fortunate that my first law firm assigned me not to a specific practice group, but instead to “specialize” in the legal practices no other lawyer had at that firm – the legal challenges that either combine specialty practices or that are not part of any established legal practice group. The assignment forced me to focus on the problem from the client’s perspective and the broadest range of possible solutions, because I rarely had two lawsuits or two transactions arising from similar facts. Those struggles taught me to focus on problem solving for my clients, no matter their situation, the client's needs, or the applicable law.
Today, I tell folks simply that I solve legal challenges for businesses and families. Because I have been a multi-disciplinary lawyer for 35 years, I have obtained both a breadth and depth of experience in law. Today most of my practice falls into the areas of real estate litigation, family law, employment law, business entity formation and advice, and contract drafting.
"AV" rating. In 1989, Bill received Martindale Hubbell's “AV” rating for legal skill and ethics, and has maintained his rating for more than 25 years. Bill is licensed to practice in California, Nevada, and every federal court in California, as well as the United States Court of Claims.
Brief History. In 1990, Bill joined Musick, Peeler & Garrett, a Los-Angeles based, multi-office firm as a partner in the litigation department. For several years, Bill represented a major plumbing manufacturer in lawsuits involving more than 10,000 California residents. Bill moved to the San Francisco office of Musick, Peeler & Garrett in 1992, and later formed a boutique firm of Link & Warhurst in 1996, focused on business and employment matters. From 2000 to 2015, Bill practiced with Hannig Law Firm, continuing his multi-disciplinary “specialty.”
Legal Volunteering. Bill has received the Outstanding Volunteer in Public Service Award three times from the Bar Association of San Francisco for his pro bono work in child custody and domestic violence matters. For several years, Bill has volunteered in Santa Clara County for family law settlement conferences and small claims hearings.
Public Participation. Bill has also served on local civic boards and governmental committees, including the Redwood City Home Loan Improvement Committee, the Redwood City Community Task force on Street Tree Policies, and Redwood City International, supporting sister-city relationships and cultural events. Bill presently sits on the Citizen Advisory Committee of the San Mateo County Transportation Authority.
The doors, business cards, and letterheads of attorneys used to say “Attorney and Counselor at Law.” This aptly describes the most important part of our work: providing guidance toward solutions that make sense and addressing the needs of those who seek our help. Put another way, you want a counselor first to avoid needing an attorney. A coach is a counselor – an expert, trusted advisor directing from the sidelines -- but unlike a coach, an attorney is in the game, on the field, calling plays as an agent for the client's best interests.
For me, acting as “counselor” is the most rewarding part of what I do, because I use my skills & experience to help the client make the decisions that are best for that particular client. The real grit of the lawyer takes place in the attorney’s office with the client.
A long-term relationship is most valuable for the client. By understanding the client and his/her business or family, the results are more satisfactory. Many of my clients use me for this purpose – a counselor who already knows their general circumstances and can present clever solutions to advance their objectives. My clients know that I invest in the client’s success, rather than approach the engagement as just a project, job, or case to work on.
From Voltaire – “I was never ruined but twice – once when I lost a lawsuit and once when I gained one.” Avoiding unhappy legal experiences requires not just a lawyer, but a counselor.
Where applicable, the names and cities of all persons and businesses potentially involved with the dispute or transaction are needed for a conflict of interest check before the initial discussion.
Not every lawyer is a good fit for every client. Initial discussions, whether in person or by phone, should assess the potential working relationship and general expectations of skill, cost, and time to completion. These initial discussions are always without charge. In addition, explanations of relevant law can be offered as a matter of public education without forming an attorney-client relationship, but to protect both the client and the attorney, specific legal advice cannot be given without an engagement agreement. Legal opinions -- the application of law to specific facts -- are subject to charge pursuant to the engagement agreement.
California law closely regulates the legal profession. Fee agreements are one of the many regulated areas of legal practice. With a few exceptions, a lawyer may provide services exceeding $1,000 only with a written engagement agreement meeting legal requirements, but in nearly every situation, the client should insist on a written agreement. Be suspicious of any lawyer who does not require that you sign an engagement agreement or who offers a very short initial agreement. The minimum information and required consumer warnings probably cannot be squeezed into a very short document and still have it written in a consumer friendly fashion.
While many legal services, such as contract review and trademark registration, can be provided entirely by email, no attorney-client relationship will be accepted solely based on email exchanges.
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