Accountants On Call

“A Matter of Legal Knowledge”

Accountants On Call, accounts in midtown Manhattan, were leasing approximately 30,000 square feet. Because the firm had severely outgrown its space and was continuing to expand, Andrews Real Estate Advisors was engaged to secure new offices about fifty percent larger in size.

One particular issue was of paramount importance to the firm. Accountants On Call was structured in such a way that the firm’s partners could be held personally responsible for rent if the firm defaulted. The lease needed to be written so that there was no joint or several liability clause making the partners accountable.

Securing limited liability in the lease–without compromising the quality of the office space and the financial terms–was the challenge of this assignment. It was our understanding of the legal complexities of this clause and the real estate strategy for obtaining it that persuaded Accountants On Call to assign its real estate project to us.

We first started on the detailed process necessary to relocating a company. For example, we believe an architect’s input is critical to assessing each office space’s functional suitability. We recommended four to Accountants On Call, together interviewed them, and selected one. An exhaustive study of office space options followed. Finally, we shared the results with the firm’s real estate committee in a presentation that included financial projections as well as descriptions of each building’s amenities and ownership.

After narrowing the options to four spaces, we began serious negotiations, making sure that no one landlord felt his office space was the only contender. In the end, we were able to obtain space on Lexington Avenue at very favorable financial terms and secured a lease without joint or several liability⎯ a factor which made the law firm’s partners very grateful to us.