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COMBINING HUMAN RELATIONSHIPS WITH TECHNOLOGY’S ADVANCES

Anthony Geraci, founder of Geraci Law Firm, believes the path to success in the coming years can be found in combining the latest technology with the oldest of human emotions—the need for establishing relationships.
Geraci says, “What we figured out is that you can take all the technology you want, but let’s get a bit more biological. Let’s get tribal. Why are we always in cities together? Why do people go to conferences? You can’t tell me you can’t learn things over a webinar in the comfort of your own home. But people want to go to conferences. It’s been proven that if you don’t touch children and if you don’t give them love and affection, they have disorders later on. That’s because we’re communal. We’re tribal. I guess history could have a lot of different interpretations. It’s just because we had to band together to fight lions and tigers and to feed ourselves. That’s the true human need— to connect with another human being.”

He employs a proven business technique for improving his personal performance, the productivity of his staff, and the longterm stability of his firm—incremental improvements across the board on a daily basis. “We need to set a goal to be just a little bit better each and every day. I just try to be a better person, a better father, a better husband, a better boss… better in every way I can. I just keep trying to be better in incremental steps every day,” he says.
Geraci Law firm was founded in 2007 and today employs 16 attorneys, a full marketing department, and is currently expanding its IT and marketing departments. The firm’s practice areas are: banking and finance, bankruptcy, litigation, securities, corporate, and real estate. “Our niche is the alternative non-bank lender who makes loans to people where banks will not or cannot,” Geraci says.

"Our company has been using The Geraci Law Firm since 2009. In our business there is very little margin for error. Their team has served as a strategic partner, helping us navigate through a complex set of compliance issues during one of the most challenging economic cycles in recent memory. Anthony has always made himself available on both small and large issues alike. His breadth of knowledge on all real estate matters is unmatched. Christina Geraci successfully represented us on a title claim against one of the biggest insurance underwriters in the nation. After watching her work, I can honestly say that she is one of the best litigators in the business. We also worked with Kevin Kim on a mortgage pool 506 licensing conversion project. Thanks to him, our company is now in a position to raise and invest money nationwide. I am not only satisfied with their service but incredibly grateful for what they have done for our company." —Andre Jimenez, Windvest Corporation

Taking Corporate Heads Out of the Sand
“To my mind the trends clearly indicate that the law as a profession is going to change dramatically.
What’s wrong with the industry is that we still treat the law as a profession and not as a business. Incredible change is coming and it’s coming fast. You can either stick your head in the sand or you can do something about it,” Geraci says.
Toward that end and toward streamlining his firm’s operations, Geraci no longer practices law. He is a full-time manager as Managing Shareholder. The firm also has a fulltime Managing Shareholder of Operations. “I’m a CEO for lack of a better term. We do a lot of things differently. Most law firms who have someone filling the managing partner role have him bill a lot and they get a credit of 500 billable hours or so for it. To me that doesn’t make sense. Why do businesses anywhere from small businesses all the way up to Fortune 500 companies all have a CEO whose sole job is to grow the business and focus on the future? That’s the formula that works.”

For example, Geraci says that technology will begin replacing many of the tasks currently handled by junior attorneys. Automation, such as that used by Legal Zoom, has already replaced work formerly handled by those junior attorneys. The attorneys with the best chances of survival in the new and ever-changing business environment will be senior attorneys, rainmakers, and litigators.
That line of reasoning has shaped the current success and future path of the Geraci Law Firm. “Our entire business model and the reason we’re doing what we’re doing is because of the institutionalization of technology. I don’t want to sound like I’m predicting doomsday. It’s not like attorneys are going by the wayside, but most people, especially lawyers, are not good business people. I think they’d admit that. What happens is they don’t see the trends coming, including technology. It’s going to be a crazy world ten years from now,” Geraci says.
Geraci sees another challenge having an increasing effect on legal firms in the near future. The requirement that prohibits non-attorneys from investing in law firms has and will continue to have a powerful negative effect on a firm’s ability to raise the funds necessary to thrive in the coming decades. “I think we’re the only profession hamstrung by that rule. This is behind Australia and England, who allow nonattorney investors in law firms. This needs to change, especially with technology to level the playing ground for us. That’s got to happen. Right now law firms are limited to lines of credit and other lending or debt facilities. We have to have access to outside capital,” he says.

"Our company engages in private money real estate financing and we have used Geraci Law Firm exclusively since our inception for legal advice and loan document preparation. Their level of service and quality of loan documents are the best in the business. I simply cannot thank Nema Daghbandan enough for his guidance and accessibility which has been vital to our company's success. I have referred a number of my colleagues to Geraci Law Firm, and I would highly recommend their services to anyone." —Carl Maggio, Principal Maggio Capital, Inc.

The Un-Firm
The attorneys and staff at Geraci Law Firm sometimes refer to themselves as “the Un- Firm,” meaning their approach is beyond identifying problems and focused on finding solutions for client challenges. In addition to the Managing Shareholder (Geraci) and the Managing Shareholder of Operations, the firm has seven managers, or “chairs,” to handle specific practice areas.
The firm has an established hierarchy but, as Geraci says, “We’re not so rigid that somebody has to report to somebody to report to somebody to report to somebody to get anything done. It’s just that I recognize my limitations in being able to manage. I can maybe manage five to seven people. Above that it just goes crazy. But, if I had to boil down my management philosophy it would be work hard/play hard. If people love what they do and can feel a sense of accomplishment, they’re happy and that makes for happy clients.”
Geraci practices the management philosophy of the servant leader. “I go in and ask what obstacles are you facing and what can I do to help you. That’s my mentality. And it’s worked for us. It’s a fact that if people feel loved they’re going to work harder,” he says.
As a full-time manager he enjoys the strategic aspects of management. “I love thinking about what’s next. I love coaching our team on how to be better attorneys, better people, and helping them going through the challenges they face from clients, interpersonal skills, and leadership. I love teaching.”

"The attorneys at the Geraci Law Firm are some of the most bright, hardworking and diligent attorneys I have had the pleasure of working with. Their team is extremely responsive and provide efficient solutions to some of the most complex problems lenders, trustees, and loan servicers encounter. I wholeheartedly endorse their attorneys for all loss mitigation, compliance, litigation and secured creditor matters." —Randy Newman, Total Lender Solutions, Inc.

Anthony GeraciLeadership in the Industry and the Community
Geraci Law Firm plans to address and overcome the challenges brought on by change through expanding efforts on the communal as well as the technological fronts. The team has created its own conference line and hired an internal marketing department. Its national presence has grown from a regional footprint into the leading brand in its niche through a result of not just marketing in general, but by creating a conference line where clients can network with each other. The firm also created a magazine for its target audience, educating them through magazines and continuing to dominate the conversation in their footprint.
The firm serves the community each year by sponsoring Families Forward, a local program for families who can’t afford jackets, sweaters, school supplies and such. The firm buys the articles and provides them to families in need. Each quarter the firm has an internal drive to sponsor a different charity. For example, they recently became a title sponsor of the Angel’s Baseball Foundation. That money goes directly toward helping children in education. “For me, that’s my sweet spot—helping children,” Geraci says.
The Geraci Law Firm has developed a unique corporate culture designed to serve clients on a personal level while at the same time staying on the cutting edge of a rapidly changing business environment. “We think we’re different than most. We’re entrepreneurial people who have linked up with our own media and consulting divisions to deliver value to our clients over time. As far as I know, we’re the only firm our size that has a full-time Managing Shareholder who does not practice law. We became one of only six law firms on the Inc. 5000 list and we are the fastest growing law firm in the Southwest. As much as I loved practicing law, I love building the firm alongside a group of talented and dedicated people focused on ‘what’s next,’” Geraci says.

Contact

Anthony Geraci
Geraci Law Firm
90 Discovery
Irvine, California 92618
949.379.2600
949.379.2610 Facsimile
a.geraci@geracillp.com
GeraciLawFirm.com

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