Smith Legal Group is happy to announce it is moving to a new address in Chesterton. The building, which is located at 802 Wabash, Suite 100, Chesterton, Indiana, is currently undergoing a redesign, which is projected to be finished by the end of November. Owner and attorney Courtney Smith wanted to find a building large enough to accommodate the needs of the business while still staying in the town they serve.
“I’m excited to stay in Chesterton,” Smith said. “It was difficult to find a space in Chesterton that would be big enough and still affordable. I didn’t want to be in a retail center or a large strip mall-type office that wasn’t necessarily in Chesterton. I wanted to be in town.”
Ryan Peters, Smith’s realtor from Street Front Properties, was able to work with her to find the right location for Smith Legal Group after a six-month search. Smith would not relent her ambition to remain in town because she feels that being involved in the heart of the community is crucial.
“It’s important to me that if you’re part of a community, you’re giving back to the community,” she said. “I try to do a lot of things with the community because you get what you give. If local residents are hiring my firm to represent them, we should be giving our time back to the community to help make it a better place.”
In the beginning, Smith said she started her business with just her, her paralegal, Lisa Caccavale, and office manager, Megan Torres at their original office located at 1100 S. Calumet Road, Suite 3A Chesterton, Indiana. With just three employees, they did not need a large space. Now that they have expanded to have a receptionist, a bookkeeper, and a few more attorneys, they have outgrown their space.
“I am most excited for everyone to feel like a team,” Smith said. “I want people to have their own space. I think we won’t feel so disjointed. They may have needs that I will help to facilitate. I’m the person they come to with any issues they have.”
Two of the attorneys have had to work from home offices due to the restrictive size of the building. While Smith felt it was a decent option for people to work from home during COVID-19, she wants her team to be able to have room to work in the building and collaborate with each other. This new address will give Smith Legal Group more offices and three conference rooms, which will allow the staff to meet with clients in-person.
“The expansion will mean we are able to serve more of our community,” Smith said. “As attorneys, we work for the clients. If we don’t have the capacity in our space to be able to meet with clients or have them come into our space, then we’re doing them a disservice. I don’t want them to think they have to meet with us on the phone because we don’t have space. It’s important for them to feel like we can accommodate them because we’re working for them.”
While Smith is not sure what she will be able to do as far as a grand opening ceremony is concerned since it will be cold by the time they open, she does plan to invite the community to celebrate their relocation.
“I’m the life of a party; I love a party,” Smith said. “Our party last year was a success. I had 150 people from the community come to my grand opening. The one last year was outside, but it will be cold this time around. I haven’t decided what I’ll do, but I know it will be something with pizazz like last year. We’ll definitely have a ribbon-cutting, and we’ll definitely have an open house.”