Name of business: LightGabler LLP
Name of owners: Jonathan Fraser Light and Karen L. Gabler
Product or service: Legal services (employment law advice and litigation; intellectual property)
Address: 760 Paseo Camarillo, Suite 300, Camarillo, CA 93010
Date established: May 2, 2011
Hours open: With email, 24/7!
Number of employees: 11 attorneys including partners; 3 paralegals; 3 administrative staff.
Franchise fee or startup capital paid: about $150,000.
Estimated annual gross revenue: $3.5 million.
Person answering this: Jonathan Fraser Light and Karen L. Gabler
What prompted you to start your own business? Desire to have a smaller boutique firm focusing on employment law needs on the management side, to have more control over client service, stronger relationships with clients and a more hands-on approach to mentoring our junior attorneys.
What is your educational and career background? Jonathan Fraser Light: 33 years as a trial lawyer, consulting on behalf of management for employee issues; graduate of UCLA and UCLA Law School. Karen L. Gabler: 23 years in practice providing employment law advice and litigation defense to management employers; graduate of the University of Hawaii and the William S. Richardson School of Law at the University of Hawaii.
How much research did you do before starting your business? Some research related to small law firm management, although Jon had several years of management experience from his prior law firm.
What were the most helpful sources, including websites? Consultants on various subjects (leasing, business operations, law firm management) who we had known from our prior business and client connections.
When were you the most discouraged? Never! Well, maybe at the end of the first month when our billing software wasn’t ready and we had to do hundreds of bills manually.
What company or individual do you admire? Light: Can’t say that I have thought about that. There are some solid lawyers in the county whom I admire, but if I single them out they will get a big(ger) head and I might forget someone.
What will make your business stand out from competitors? A team-oriented approach to ensure quality work and timely client service. Lawyers are notoriously bad about prompt return of calls and emails. We have an integrated team of lawyers who regularly back each other up, to make sure that someone is always available for client emergencies. We also focus on providing workplace solutions for clients, instead of simply telling them what they can and can’t do under the law.
Who is your target client base? Any employer of virtually any size in any industry throughout California. We have clients with employee counts ranging from one to tens of thousands over numerous industries spread all over the state.