Three ways startups can cut legal fees in half

A reader asks: We launched our company about six months ago, and we’ve been using a big Silicon Valley law firm to handle the legal work. The problem is, we’re getting killed with the fees. We just closed a $250,000 convertible-note financing, and the bill was almost $13,000. When I reviewed the invoice, I saw the partner was billing us at $740 an hour, a senior associate at $595 an hour and a junior associate at $350 an hour. We like them and think they’re doing a good job, but we just can’t pay this much for legal work. Could you please give us some advice on what to do?