Our Story | Essex Richards

We dedicate ourselves to helping our clients and our community.  It’s that simple.

Essex Richards was established in 1976 with two lawyers who shared an itch to create a firm where they could take pride in their work, take care of their clients’ needs, and serve their community.

They believed that if they worked hard, provided excellent legal counsel, and made their clients feel well-served, they would create a firm where clients would return and refer their friends.

Above all, they knew the importance of bringing the highest level of professionalism and ethics to everything they did. They believed this would earn respect from other lawyers and judges, and make their firm even more effective in serving their clients and community.

Those founders, Ken Essex and Chan Richards, relied on their experience in other law firms to build their own firm – bringing their best legal practices to Essex Richards, and leaving the not-so-good stuff behind.

That’s the way Essex Richards has been from the beginning. Most of our lawyers have come from other firms, bringing a wide range of experience and skills with them, seeking the opportunity to serve clients well, in the company of like-minded, talented colleagues.

The itch to do things better is still with us. We strive to follow best practices in all that we do and are continually looking for ways to do things better by wedding new tech with old-style personal touch. Above all else, we value our counselling relationships with our clients.

In the Charlotte community, we are seen as a mid-sized firm offering a wide array of services to businesses, families, and individual clients. We excel in several practice areas but have avoided the pressure to specialize in a single niche. We’re large enough to serve our clients with a travelling team’s bench, but small enough to know each other well and appreciate the company of our colleagues. It’s a good vibe, and it makes us look forward to seeing what the next 45 years will bring.

We love Charlotte and take civic engagement seriously. Our lawyers have consistently served in leadership positions with community groups, nonprofit organizations, churches, and schools. We want to help create an even better community for generations to come.

Since 1976, we’ve stayed true to our roots, striving to make our clients feel appreciated and well-served, just as our founders did. Even in these days of social media and internet marketing, most of our new clients are referrals from other clients or attorneys who know us and respect the quality of our work.  We like it that way. We are proud of that tradition and look forward to the chance to serve you.

Essex Richards is proud of the way we serve our community, and will continue to make giving back to the community where we live and work not only a priority, but part of the way we do business.

Our lawyers are involved in the following organizations, among others:

    • American Red Cross
    • Arts and Science Council
    • Association of Fundraising Professionals
    • Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Greater Charlotte
    • Catawba Lands Conservancy
    • Charlotte Area Fund
    • Charlotte Area YMCA
    • Charlotte Certified Development Corporation
    • Charlotte Museum Mile
    • Charlotte Viewpoint
    • Council for Children’s Rights
    • Dropout Prevention Study Committee
    • Easter Seals UCP of North Carolina
    • Hands on Charlotte
    • Girls on the Run of Charlotte
    • Keep Charlotte Beautiful Committee
    • Legal Aid of North Carolina
    • Legal Services of Southern Piedmont
    • The Light Factory
    • Metrolina Independent Living Center
    • National Patient Advocate Foundation
    • North Carolina Humanities Council
    • North Carolina Open Government Coalition
    • Public Art Commission
    • United Cerebral Palsy
    • World Cerebral Palsy Alliance
    • WFAE 90.7