Elizabeth L. Carter, Esq., LLC is a boutique law firm helping to increase access to business capital and corporate securities law through accessible legal services to underrepresented entrepreneurs and legal training to lawyers and law students of color. The firm assists investment companies, businesses, nonprofits, and cooperatives with the legal strategy and compliance of raising capital. We service clients throughout the U.S. with our main office located in Chicago, IL.
Most social enterprises, small businesses, cooperatives, and nonprofits find difficulty in obtaining the necessary capital for starting, growing, and/or sustaining their enterprises. This is especially true for Black and Latinx-owned businesses where traditional funding sources such as banks, venture capital, and angel investors are often out of reach. The same is true for many nonprofits who find difficulty in getting the funds that they need through traditional philanthropic fundraising.
Likewise, the securities legal industry remains heavily dominated, led, and controlled by White-owned firms, especially those owned by White men. For instance, Black attorneys represent only 3.3% of law firm attorneys within the U.S. despite representing over 13% of the entire U.S. population. This is in stark contrast to White attorneys who represent 82% of law firms in the U.S., with White men representing a majority at 55%. These numbers are even more stark for women of color, namely Black women, making up only 8.57% and 1.73% of all attorneys, respectively.
Our Firm helps to combat the racial and gender inequities within business capital industry creating sustainable avenues and new ecosystems for Black, Afro-Latinx entrepreneurs, and other historically underrepresented business and non-profits to effectively raise capital.
We are also fighting against the racial and gender equity problem within the securities legal space as one of very few Black-women owned securities law firms within the U.S., all with a purpose of making the industry more representative and culturally sensitive to underrepresented entrepreneurs. We aim to do this through our Law Clerkship Program, Interview Series, and partnering with law schools and other organizations that serve Black and Afro-Latinx law students.
The Firm prides itself on providing accessible legal services to underrepresented investment companies, small businesses, nonprofits, cooperatives, and other social enterprises through lower hourly rates than the typical securities law firm, cost-effective flat-fee structures and monthly installment payment plans to help with the management of legal fees.
Our approach to business and corporate securities law is very specific to private equity and is uniquely structured into three (3) phases: legal strategy; legal compliance; and legal maintenance. Furthermore, we understand the importance of having a strong team when supporting our clients through the difficult waters of capital raising. As such, we have built an ecosystem of wrap-around support services with a variety of industry partners to better serve our clients. See Our Ecosystem Partners
To continue to be the leading business capital and corporate securities law firm for underrepresented and underfunded businesses, nonprofits, investment companies, cooperatives, and other social enterprises looking to raise capital from their community and other investors.
WHAT IS INVESTMENT CROWDFUNDING?
Investment Crowdfunding is a very specific area of law that focuses on certain exemptions found in the U.S. Securities Act of 1933. These exemptions can be found under Regulation Crowdfunding (Reg CF), Regulation D (Rule 506(b), Rule 506(c), and Rule 04), and Regulation A+ (Reg A+). Specifically, Investment Crowdfunding is a subsection of Corporate Securities, which is a practice of Business Law that focuses on the state and federal legal compliance of business capital raising - primarily from investors. Business law is a broad category of law that encompasses anything from mergers & acquisitions, business formations, business contracts, to business litigation, general counsel legal work, and business financing. Therefore, crowdfunding securities law is a sub-sub section of business law that focuses on very particular business financial transactions.