About Michael Balourdos
What's my goal? To get deals done. Nothing more. Many lawyers are notorious for 'killing' deals due to their overzealous representation of their clients. They tend to bog down negotiations with unnecessary arguments and take stubborn positions. Not me.
I strive to close out transactions without sacrificing crucial deal points for my clients. How? Well, because I wear a developer's 'hat' on many occasions, I'm able to understand the deal from both sides. As an active partner in a local, successful commercial real estate development firm, I can confidently claim that I'm able to see through the eyes of my clients. Not many lawyers can do that. I can.
Since I constantly communicate and deal with my tenants, I know when to back off and when to squeeze. Real world, business experience gives me the edge over other lawyers to evaluate the situation and adapt to the existing environment and not simply use the same 'cookie cutter' legal tactics. When you personally fight the battles, you're better equipped to represent your client.
When push comes to shove, and it becomes necessary, I go to court. I generally believe it should be the last resort to resolve any dispute. But, it can often become an effective tool. Leverage, timing, consequence, success, recovery….all are taken into consideration before presenting yourself and your clients before a judge.
I've litigated my fair share of cases. Primarily commercial breach of contract and forcible eviction cases. I've learned from my litigation practice to further hone my transactional practice. How a judge rules on a particular contractual issue aids and often dictates how I would approach it during my contract negotiations.
Reputation. An incredibly undervalued and overlooked term. Chicago may be a large city, but it's a small business community. I cannot stress the importance of building up a solid reputation between developers and attorneys. I can confidently claim that I've established a strong reputation in this community. It precedes you before any negotiations start and carries through to the end.
Indiana University BA History – 1996
Chicago Kent College of Law – 2001
As a Yale University graduate and accomplished soccer player, I was very accustomed to high pressure situations. So, when it came time to decide on a professional career, I did not shy away from the challenge of practicing law or the responsibilities of representing clientele all across the country.
I believe litigation is the last option. If possible, I always first calmly seek affable compromise in any dispute. But when compromise fails, I strike and strike hard to achieve my client's goals.
I believe success starts and ends with knowing who I represent, why I am representing them, and what it is we are up against. To me, this means more than just the facts-it means understanding the person-top to bottom, inside and out.