Key Service Areas
- Information Technology, Cybersecurity, and Privacy
- Arbitration and Mediation
- Business and Corporate Planning
Legal Assistant - Patty Doren
Grand Rapids Location
55 Campau Avenue NW, Suite 300
Grand Rapids, Michigan 49503
11377 James Street
Holland, Michigan 49422
How do you help businesses and individuals?
As a business attorney who focuses on serving clients providing information technology and creative services, my practice includes:
Creative Professionals: I advise software developers, designers, and other creative professionals in documenting their relationship with their clients – and clients doing business with creative professionals – including negotiating and drafting software and design service agreements and statements of work. I focus on ensuring that all parties understand their obligations to one another and the terms on which each deliverable is to be provided.
General Business Counsel: I help business owners form new companies and serve as a general counsel to numerous small and medium sized businesses. 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. I also help individuals and businesses negotiate non-competition, non-solicitation, and non-circumvention agreements – and to resolve disputes involving restrictive covenants.
The nucleus of my practice is innovation. As technology evolves, the body of law addressing our relationship with data grows, too. I work proactively with my clients to continually assess the legal foundations of 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.
University of Pittsburgh, J.D., 1999
Wittenberg University, B.A., 1996
How do you advise businesses on their privacy obligations? Data and privacy laws are regularly enacted and amended to keep up with...