When you first enter the shared space located in a down-town Phoenix high-rise that houses the offices of MacQueen & Gottlieb, PLC, you quickly realize that it’s not your typical law office. It’s open and modern, void of dark, heavy wood and a formal feel, and once you meet co-founder, Ben Gottlieb, you understand why.
Ben founded the law firm MacQueen & Gottlieb, PLC in 2016 with Patrick MacQueen. The two have known each other for five years and worked as partners at Combs, Gottlieb & MacQueen, formerly Combs Law Group, before launching their own firm.
The firm has grown 350% in their first year-and-a-half of business as they continue to add to their team.
Ben believes one of the reasons for their success is that they’re “normal and relatable” and they get along well with their clients. “We’re easy to communicate with, we love having in-person meetings and consultations,” says Ben.
He says that they often spend time with their clients outside of the scope of work, whether meeting for lunch or a round of golf.
The second reason for their success is the successful outcomes of their clients’ cases.
Their firm does real estate transactional law as well as litigation. Patrick handles a lot of transactional matters. He represents entities or companies engaging in real estate transactions.
“I’m more focused on litigation real estate disputes, such as property title, easement, home owner’s association, buyer/seller and landlord/tenant disputes,” says Ben.
Ben is also an Arizona Department of Real Estate approved instructor and teaches a class about HOAs to real estate agents through the Southwestern School of Real Estate.
“I love to teach; I think a big part of being a good trial lawyer is educating the jury,” says Ben. “So that’s exactly what you are – you’re a teacher.”
Ben fostered his passion for real estate law working at Combs Law Group after graduating from Arizona State University. It was at Combs that he acquired his experience and knowledge regarding real estate law. His passion for Arizona came even before that.
“My older brother was attending ASU, and I would come out to visit him,” says Ben. During one of these visits from his home in Grand Rapids, MI, he sat in on a constitutional law class at the ASU College of Law. “It was 13 years ago. It was in March, and I remember going, ‘Wow!’ It’s like 82 degrees, there’s not a cloud in the sky, and I was also really impressed with the law school – the weather was just the icing on the cake.”
At ASU, Ben was the managing editor of the Arizona State Law Journal, a member of the Jewish Law Student Association and president of Alpha Epsilon Pi, a Jewish fraternity on campus. While there, he grew the fraternity from four members to 45.
Ben jokes that growing is a trend for him. “From age 15 to 17 I grew 11½ inches. I had my growth spurt all at one time. I went from 5 feet 4 inches to 6 feet 3½ inches.”
His goal now is to grow the firm and continue to build the team. When he and Patrick started they were the only attorneys, and they had one paralegal and an office administrator. Currently, their team has grown to 15 members.
MacQueen & Gottlieb is located in downtown Phoenix in a shared office space concept. This allows them to add an office when needed, and Ben thinks it makes clients feel more comfortable than if they were in a more traditional, formal law office.
“What separates our law office and the atmosphere is that we try not to take ourselves too seriously,” says Ben. “We try to cultivate an environment where people can laugh. We think that improves not only productivity but it creates an errorless work product.”
“The guys really promote being a team,” comments Holli Higgins, paralegal and office administrator. “It’s always, ‘my team,’ I find it refreshing that it’s a team concept. It’s ‘Ben and his team.’ ”
Ben adds that they also don’t impose billable hour requiems. “We don’t want people here burning the midnight oil. We want them to have a good work/life balance, and we want happy employees.”
Ben and his wife, Jacqueline, have been married for six years and have three boys. He says that his uncle jokes one day his firm’s name will be, “Gottlieb, Gottlieb, Gottlieb and Gottlieb.”
Along with his growing business and growing family, Ben is looking to grow his relationship with the Jewish community.
“I’m looking to get more involved with the Jewish community, and we (as a family) are looking to get more involved at Temple Emanuel of Tempe,” says Ben. “I want to be more of a leader in the Jewish community.”
For more information on MacQueen & Gottlieb, PLC, visit mandglawgroup.com.