The firm was founded in 2015.
Bridging the Gap Between Law and Innovation.
Blending a lawyer’s eye for detail with a business owner’s eye on the bottom line, Moya Law assists start-ups, early-stage companies, and tech entrepreneurs in navigating the legal issues that touch every aspect of a young and growing business.
We will facilitate necessary actions, minimize risk, maximize opportunity, and provide actionable advice and practical solutions that bridge the gap between the nuances of the law and the complexities of technology.
Collaboration, Communication, and Confidence.
The collaboration between you and your team is a key driver of your success. Your relationship with your lawyer should be equally synergetic.
We take the time to get to know the specifics of each client’s business, do a deep dive into their goals and objectives, and develop a working partnership based on trust, accessibility, and mutually-shared vision.
A core value of the Moya Law practice is to provide incisive guidance. From strategic planning to day-to-day decisions, we are responsive and accessible to our clients, and work to earn and keep the confidence of our clients.
Moya Law has extensive experience, as well as a record of success, representing individuals and business in a wide range of legal matters. Due to our entrepreneurial experience developing technology to provide quality and affordable legal services at scale, we bring an intuitive understanding of the needs and concerns of start-up owners when it comes to legal services.
Adding Value. Subtracting Uncertainty.
The value of legal services to a small business can be illusory if the sound guidance, clarity, and peace of mind you hired your lawyer to provide is undermined by uncertainty and anxiety about costs, scope of work, or direction. Therefore, Moya Law works closely with each client at the outset to develop a tailored strategy and approach that defines goals, outlines deliverables, and ensures that fees and costs fit budgets and expectations. We discuss and explore unbundled services, alternative fee arrangements, and other options as needed. A positive, productive and successful attorney-client relationship follows.
We are committed to ensuring that entrepreneurs and start-ups have access to the high-caliber legal counsel that they need in order to survive and thrive.
21 Questions for Moya Law
When was the firm founded?
In what states can you practice?
Our attorneys are licensed to practice law in one or more of the following states: California, New York, and Texas. Please see our attorney profiles for specific information about our licensures.
How is the Moya Law Firm different?
We are experienced attorneys. We’ve been around the proverbial “block,” and we know how to get things done quickly and efficiently. We take pride in our written work product, which rivals the material prepared by the largest law firms in the world. Our lean size allows us to deliver exceptional legal work with great agility. Moreover, our technological savvy, forensics abilities, and in-house proprietary systems allow us to do things that most other attorneys can’t without expending thousands of dollars on significant overhead and outside consultants.
Who is your typical client?
While there is no “typical” client, we often are approached by a wide range of businesses and individuals who have experienced “sticker shock” at the high hourly rates billed by large law firms.
What are the biggest challenges facing in-house legal departments today?
The three biggest challenges are (i) how to ensure predictability in legal budgets and legal expenditures, (ii) how to avoid redundant work and its recurring cost, and (iii) how to familiarize outside counsel with the peculiarities and idiosyncrasies of business practices and business systems without incurring exorbitant fees or disrupting operations.
How would your attorneys' extensive background in litigation help me in a transactional matter?
Transactional lawyers anticipate future disputes and draft agreements in order to resolve uncertainty and avoid future disputes. By contrast, litigators are extensively familiar with how to deal with problems after they’ve arisen, their contributing causes, and how to resolve disputes in the most advantageous way. It is precisely our lawyers’ background in litigation that brings the knowledge and expertise needed for transactional matters. Having a litigation background creates a true confluence of legal expertise that benefits our clients.
How does having a litigation background prepare you for negotiations?
Negotiations can be stressful and complex especially where there may be many issues to be addressed and difficult personalities. Everyone wants to come out of a negotiation feeling that they “won.” Litigators are especially attuned to how business deals sour and many other potential sources of risk, so they often make excellent transactional advisors, particularly for deals that are fraught with risk and uncertainty. Litigators are also excellent communicators and we can get our point across precisely and succinctly with the utmost level of professionalism at all times.
Shouldn’t I go to a larger law firm for my most important litigation matters?
This question is based upon a very flawed premise that might sound reasonable, but is not true. All cases are different. Some need heavy staffing, while others can be competently handled by 1 or 2 great attorneys. Combined, we have 20 years of legal experience working at some of the premier law firms and corporate law departments in the U.S. We've also litigated against big firms throughout our careers, and we're not intimidated by an aggressive attorney on the other end of a nasty letter. While many large firms provide excellent service, they often do so at an exorbitant cost and with little predictability (or stability) in staffing. Our clients need not worry about such things.
How quickly can you ramp-up your staffing on a large case?
We typically handle most matters in-house. The need to add additional staff to a matter is rare. If a particular need does arise, however, we can typically staff-up our cases with supervised contract attorneys within 48 to 72 hours.
In your view, what is the biggest risk to start-up businesses in today's legal climate?
In our view, the biggest risk in 2016 is how to position one’s business to attain short-term success in the face of souring investor sentiment. Self-funded and “bootstrapped” start-ups will likely be best poised to navigate the anticipated economic doldrums of 2016, while start-ups that have experienced successive rounds of financing will face significant pressures to exit or raise additional funds in a down-round. This will likely translate into a greater divergence of interest between founders and financiers; greater pressures on management to reduce headcount; and more frequent threats of litigation between start-ups and their suppliers, creditors and other third parties.
Why do most start-up businesses use the same law firms all the time?
There are several reasons. Some of the biggest Silicon Valley firms have built astounding reputations as the go-to law firms for start-up work by getting a foot in the door with free or discounted legal offerings to new businesses. The word-of-mouth nature of legal referrals also helps drive work to these firms, as does the (disputable) belief that their involvement in entity formation and early advising bestows a badge of legitimacy from the perspective of VCs. While these firms often do great legal work, they often command a king’s ransom for other legal matters, and many businesses don’t realize this until they receive their first bill for other, non-formation, non-discounted legal work.
How do your billing rates differ than from those charged by larger law firms?
Our hourly billing rates are competitive with larger firms. Because we are lean, nimble and deliberately keep our overhead low, our rates usually fall somewhere between 50% and 75% of those charged by larger law firms, depending on the type of matter at issue. We have positioned ourselves to provide personalized attention to our clients’ legal issues while capturing economies of scale on repeat matters, without the constant churn of employee turnover that is endemic to larger law firms.
Does your firm accommodate alternative fee arrangements (AFAs)?
Yes. While our fees are always determined on a case-by-case basis, we have entered into a variety of alternative fee arrangements when appropriate. We recognize that hourly fees are not always appropriate in every matter, and we do our best to ensure that our clients are pleased with the value of services they receive. We want our clients to return to us for their future legal needs.
Does your firm serve as local counsel for other firms?
We are amenable to serving as local counsel for other, non-California law firms, particularly in litigation matters filed in California, whether state or federal.
What are your professional affiliations?
Our attorneys include members of the American Bar Association, the Bar Association of San Francisco, the Alameda County Bar Association, and a few other local professional organizations. Please see our attorney profiles for a specific listing of affiliations.
Why should I trust your firm with my case/matter?
Choosing an attorney is one of the most important, consequential decisions one can make, and we’re just not into the “hard sell.” We pride ourselves on our honesty, integrity and professionalism, and that, we believe, speaks volumes about who we are.
Does your firm do pro bono work?
We do pro bono work on a case-by-case basis, and are committed to meeting the ABA’s Law Firm Pro Bono Challenge on a yearly basis.
How would I be kept informed of my case/matter if you were to become my attorney?
We believe that fluid and clear communication with our clients is paramount in providing you with the highest quality legal services. We will be sure to keep you informed of all important developments, deadlines and issues that may arise. We will work with you to understand your preferred communication mediums whether it be telephone, letters or e-mail. We don’t ever want you to feel that you are in the dark about the status of your case or matter.
How can I become a client of your firm?
Becoming a client of our firm is a relatively simple and straightforward process. Please contact us via telephone, e-mail or by filling out the form provided in the “Contact Us” section of our website. We will get in touch with you and get some basic information regarding the nature of the legal service you are requesting. Next, we will run a conflicts check to ensure that we are not conflicted out of representing you. Finally, if we agree to accept the representation, we will ask you to sign a retention letter which will specify the nature of the legal services that we will provide to you, the fees for those services, as well as our responsibilities as your attorney and your responsibilities as a client. Our goal is to make the process as simple and as clear as possible for our prospective clients so that we can quickly start providing them with high-quality legal services.
This is a great website; who made it?
Our founding partner, Mario A. Moya, designed and built this website using a Wordpress theme, a few quick plugins, and a sprinkling of CSS and PHP.
I can sense some informality and humor in this Q&A; shouldn't my lawyer be serious and demure 100% of the time?
There’s really no fun in being a stodgy lawyer, and we’ve met quite a few of them over the the course of our careers. They aren’t especially liked by businesspeople and juries, and you might not like working with them either.