Keystone Law April 2019

Trust Matters APRIL 2019


My, How We’ve Grown In 12 Years, What Changed and What Stayed the Same?

There’s exciting news this month: I’m pleased to announce that our firm is once again expanding the ways we can serve our community! Earlier this year, we brought on Eve Parks and Susan Pintel, two amazing family law attorneys dedicated to helping people navigate difficult times. And now we’ve added business attorney John Dahl to the team, giving us the ability to help small businesses grow. “But Francisco,” some may ask, “won’t this expansion mean your firm is losing its personal touch?” Believe me when I say, as the founder of Keystone, this question was on my mind too. The honest answer is that we are just as aligned with our founding values today as we were the day I started the firm. And here’s why. I began this firm because I was tired of the way lawyers treated one another and their clients. I’d been through law school and the corporate legal machine and was finding it hard to hang on to my down-to-earth point of view. It sounds harsh, but the reality is some attorneys can’t turn off their inner lawyer, even in social situations. I’ve gone out to lunch with colleagues, only to be cross-examined on my choice of sandwich. I knew that if I wanted to remain sane, I’d have to strike out on my own. And that’s exactly what I did. It was 2007, and I didn’t even have a physical office space. I worked from home and would meet clients at rented office spaces, which meant a lot of driving around town. But even in those solo days, I had a clear vision of what set Keystone Law apart: I, and anyone else I employed, was going to be held to a higher standard and be courteous, even to our rivals. Essentially, “Don’t be a jerk,” has been our motto from day one.

This mantra has served us well in the estate planning field. Often, disputes and probate can be emotionally charged, and an opportunistic or unsympathetic lawyer can exacerbate the situation. Thankfully, my team and I quickly built a reputation for not only calming these situations when they occurred but for also keeping them from happening in the first place. Our founding philosophy has transferred just as well to the equally nerve- wracking areas of family and business law. Honestly, the most difficult part of holding onto this core philosophy is finding people who share our values. Not every lawyer sees things the same way, and that’s okay, but when I sat down to meet John for the first time last year, I knew he’d be a perfect fit here. Down-to-earth and easy to talk to, he’s a credit to business lawyers everywhere. Indeed, the niche he’s built for himself speaks to his commitment to giving tech companies the flexibility they need. John primarily helps tech and tech manufacturing companies before they are ready to hire a full-time, in-house attorney on a “fractional” basis. That way, a small business can get the legal protection they need to be able to grow without being billed by the hour. And when the time comes that a company has grown enough to need their own in-house attorney, John and Keystone will lend a helping hand to find and vet the best candidates. Should a business client choose, John and our team are more than willing to use our expertise and resources to screen candidates and find the right lawyer for the job.

John Dahl

areas, it still doesn’t feel strange to think back to those days in my home office. My team may have grown considerably, but the way Keystone Law Firm does business is the same as ever. The only thing that’s changed is our capacity to help people.

Here’s to the future,


So now, at a firm with five other outstanding attorneys spanning three distinct practice | 1

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