I’ve helped many lawyers go the space-for-services
route. After witnessing a fair number of
disasters but plenty of successes too, here’s my prescription for a happy
The most successful arrangements are based on an agreed
hourly rate and an agreed monthly rent. The tenant does work and tracks the bill. The firm expects to be paid each month but
accepts hours instead of cash.
In months where the services exceed the rent, the firm has
the option to pay cash or give a credit against future rent. In months when the hours do not equal the
rent, the lawyer signs an IOU for the deficit collectible only against
All out of pocket expenses are paid in cash and everything
is in writing.
Ignore any element of this advice at your own peril!