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Course Application


Business Basics for Lawyers

Call for more information 495-649-2273

The goal of this course is to introduce law students and practicing lawyers to the concepts of accounting, economics and finance needed to effectively counsel clients operating in the complex environment of modern business, as well as to touch on the skills lawyers need to operate effective and profitable legal practices. Through lectures, discussion and exercises, students will learn simple accounting methods, the elements of financial reporting statements, tests for evaluating businesses; the use of financial analysis in business transactions; and the mechanics of the market and investing. Towards the end of the course, as time allows, the class will touch on the economics of law practice and the fundamentals of compensation, management and marketing for professional services.


Class 1


Basic Accounting Principles

Ledgers, balance sheets, income statements, accrual accounting, depreciation and amortization.

Class 2


Basic Accounting Principles

Reading and using financial statements; GAAP versus Non-GAAP; the role of the auditor; accounting exercises.

Class 3


Business Strategies and Valuation

Cash flow, debt and interest, the uses and types of debt, the present and time value of money, capital budgeting

Class 4


Business Strategies and Valuation

Valuation of an ongoing business; methods of appraisal; capitalization rates; discount factors; real estate finance

Class 5


Corporate Finance

Survey of business forms; capitalization; types of shares, bonds and debentures; debt versus equity considerations; tax.

Class 6


Corporate Finance

Dividends and distributions: distributions of property; accounting tests; stock splits; shareholder protection.

Semester Break



Class 7


Corporate Finance

Mergers & acquisitions methods and dynamics; tax and accounting considerations; hostile takeovers

Class 8


Investing & the Market

Intro to the stock markets and the operations of exchanges; market participants and investing.

Class 9


Investing & the Market

Investment companies advisors and their operations; commercial annuities and pensions; insurance.

Class 10


The Law Firm as a Bus. Organization

The economics of legal practice. Productivity and compensation methods in the law firm.

Class 11


The Law Firm as a Bus. Organization

“Rainmaking” marketing for professionals; market placement, image and strategy

Class 12


The Law Firm as a Bus. Organization

Law firm governance and management decision making; the managing partner as a CEO.