One drawback that small law firms have is finding large law firm facilities -- libraries, office staff and a professional setting -- at an affordable price.
But leave it to California to send its ideas eastward. Now there is the Fegen Suite, a group of full-floor law suites offered by Attorney Office Management Inc. of California at 4801 Massachusetts Ave. NW.
The suites are available for leasing. For their monthly rent, attorneys or groups of attorneys receive the services of telephone operators and receptionists, the use of a law library with up-to-date filing of supplements and new books, an office or offices furnished by AOMI to suit personal and professional needs, janitorial services and utilities. And guaranteed rents protect tenants against maintenance costs and inflation that otherwise could affect their lease, AOMI emphasizes.
The company says that lawyers can sign the type of lease they feel is most suitable for them. AOMI offers month-to-month or year-to-year leases, and leases for more than a year. On the longer leases, a refundable security deposit is required. A lease may be terminated by the tenant with advance written notice of 30 days, but AOMI cannot terminate it.
If a partnership or association should dissolve, an attorney may stay in his or her own office without being obligated to pay rent on the vacancies left behind. The lease also may be terminated if a lawyer wishes to move from a smaller office to a larger one or to another Fegen Suite location.
AOMI operates 51 Fegen Suites and expects 90 will be finished by next year, equalling 2,597,092 square feet of office space. More than two-thirds of the 90 suites will be in California. The rest are to be spread across the country, with Philadelphia, Garden City, N.Y., Miami, Atlanta and the District of Columbia as the East Coast locations.
The Washington Fegen Suite occupies 63,536 square feet on the fourth and fifth floors of the Massachusetts Avenue building. Office rents will increase by 20 percent tomorrow, according to AOMI.