A Richmond law firm is trying the D.C. Beltway on for size.
McCandlish Holton opened a new office in Fairfax Sept. 1. The northern expansion comes not long after the firm switched floors and took more space at its Bank of America Center headquarters in downtown Richmond.
Scott C. Ford, a vice president at McCandlish Holton, said the firm transferred one attorney from the Richmond office, Kwabena Akowuah, to the new Fairfax office. It will hire a paralegal and other support staff for the office in the short term and hopes to add more attorneys there over time.
Ford said the location was chosen to provide better service to clients in Northern Virginia.
“We’ve been thinking about adding the office for the last three years and have realized client needs are really requiring we have a presence in Northern Virginia,” Ford said.
The new office is at 8280 Willow Oaks Corporate Drive, near the Capital Beltway’s intersection with Interstate 66.
Ford estimated that about a quarter of the firm’s clients live in or have some sort of business interest in Northern Virginia.
The office also gives the firm the opportunity to recruit from a larger pool of legal professionals. It will focus on litigation but will also work with healthcare and real estate clients in the area.
Fairfax is McCandlish Holton’s only office outside of Richmond. The firm previously had a presence in Paris and China but no longer keeps offices there, Ford said.
Ford said the firm is looking at other areas in Virginia for future satellite offices. It has no plans to look outside of Virginia this year.
McCandlish Holton has been growing this year, both in office space and personnel. In addition to securing 30 percent more space downtown, the firm added about four attorneys to a roster that now includes about 35. Ford estimated that the firm employs about 80 people.
Other Richmond law firms have also been on the move this year.
This summer, LeClairRyan secured an office in Houston by absorbing a Texas firm.
And in April, McGuireWoods opened an office in Dallas, its third location in Texas, after luring a team over from a competitor.