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Hal Ostrow

"Once in a while you get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right"

Robert Hunter

Key Service Areas

  • Arbitration and Mediation
  • Business and Corporate Planning
  • Mergers and Acquisitions

616.233.5120

Legal Assistant - Patty Doren

About Hal

How do you help businesses and individuals?

I help business owners form new companies and serve as a general counsel to numerous small and medium sized businesses, with an emphasis on software and design professionals. On a day to day basis, I assist my clients in navigating matters ranging from formation to angel and venture capital funding to interaction with third parties to mergers and acquisitions. At the heart of my practice is innovation. As technology evolves, how my clients address their clients' needs changes, too, which leads to continually assessing the legal foundations of all their business relationships.

What is the most important advice that you have given a client?

Listen. There's a great line in Hamilton: "Talk less, smile more." The only way to ever get to a win-win in a deal is to know what the other party considers to be a win. The only way to do that is to listen - or talk less and smile more. Listening doesn't mean not being aggressive; it means obtaining insight we otherwise wouldn't have so that we can develop effective strategies and tactics to reach our objective.

What did you learn in your first year of practice that you still utilize today?

I was privileged to begin my practice by serving as a judicial law clerk. The judge for whom I clerked imparted in me the importance of evaluating every possible approach to the cases on his docket, even if that position hadn't been briefed. In a transactional practice that often means looking at every deal from multiple angles until finding a way to meet every party's goals and expectations in a way most beneficial to my client.

Education

University of Pittsburgh, J.D., 1999

Wittenberg University, B.A., 1996

Insights

Western Michigan Israel Business Energizer

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

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Q: What is the most important ingredient to making a positive legal experience?

A:

Setting clear goals for every phase of a transaction and continually making sure that we’re on track to meet them. We can’t predict everything, but we can have a smoother path to getting to a successful result if we know what “success” means at the outset.

Associations

State Bar of Michigan, Building a 21st Century Practice Committee, 2015-2016

State Bar of Michigan, Judicial Qualifications Committee, 2013-2015

State Bar of Michigan, Law & the Media Committee, 2012-2015

State Bar of Michigan, Representative Assembly, 2007-2010

Michigan State Bar Foundation, Fellow, 2015-Present

Grand Rapids Bar Association, Member

Michigan Israel Business Bridge, Vice President (2013-2016) & Member, Board of Directors (2011-Present)

American Israel Public Affairs Committee, Member, National Council (2014-Present) & Michigan Council (2009 - Present)

Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce, Member, PAC Board (2013-Present)

University of Pittsburgh Alumni Association, Grand Rapids Area Representative (2010-Present)

Temple Emanuel, Member, Board of Trustees (2010-2012)

Bar Admission

State of Michigan

Supreme Court of the United States

U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit

U.S. Court of Federal Claims

U.S. District Court, Western District of Michigan

U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois

Awards and Recognition

University of Pittsburgh, CALI Excellence for the Future Award for Legal Negotiation, 1999

National Association of Distinguished Counsel, Nation's Top One Percent, 2016 & 2017

Super Lawyers®, Rising Star, 2010 and 2012-2014

Avvo Client's Choice Award, 2012