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Bancroft & McAlister LLP continues a tradition of excellence, representing individual and business clients on sophisticated legal matters.

In 1956, after a short career as a certified public accountant, Jim Bancroft graduated from Hastings College of the Law and opened a law office on Montgomery Street in San Francisco. Jim McAlister and Luther Avery soon joined the practice, and the partnership of Bancroft, Avery & McAlister was launched. From the beginning the firm specialized in tax law, business law, real estate law, estate planning, and estate and trust administration. Over time the firm yielded to the pressures to expand, although its growth was deliberately slowed by its commitment to maintaining a small firm environment with an emphasis on close contact with individual clients and business owners.

In time, the firm was providing its corporate and partnership clients a full spectrum of business representation. At the same time, the estate planning group was providing sophisticated tax and estate planning advice to its individual clients. The firm was a pioneer in San Francisco in hiring and training legal assistants to provide clients with a depth of experience in estate and trust administration. The practice of employing skilled legal assistants whose billing rates are lower than lawyers’ billing rates continues today.

Through the years the lawyers in the firm held to the belief that the firm’s size is its strength. The firm is large enough to have depth of ability in the recognized areas of business practice and individual counseling. It can allocate the resources needed for any matter within the areas in which the lawyers specialize. Yet the firm is small enough to avoid the burdensome overhead including excessive staffing that larger firms pass on to clients. Partly due to its reliance on state-of-the-art technology, Bancroft & McAlister LLP continues to deliver first-rate legal services at a cost that is always competitive with — and usually below — the cost of similar services at larger firms. Clients like the fact that they have ready access to the Bancroft & McAlister partner in charge of their work, and the assurance that a partner is personally involved in and responsible for the substantive decisions on their matters. An experienced lawyer is always available to respond to the client’s needs.

The firm has always encouraged active participation in the community. Many of the firm’s lawyers are active in bar association, charitable, and civic activities. They regularly speak at continuing education programs across the country. They also serve as board members or representatives of charitable organizations and as elected and appointed officials in local communities. Lawyers in the firm have authored books on practice subjects and written extensively on specific areas of the law.

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