Skip to main content

Gary E. Jacobson

Contracts and agreements Attorney at Bellevue, WA

5.0   25 reviews
  • Licensed for 52 years
    State WA
    Acquired 1970
    Honorary No misconduct found

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

About Gary

Learn Gary’s areas of practice.

Gary was born and raised in Seattle, Washington. He married another Seattle native, Kaaren and together they raised their four children in the greater Seattle area. 

He started his legal career in the King County Prosecutor’s office working in the civil divisioon. After two years practicing with the County, Gary signed-on with Safeco Insurance Company working in their legal department. 

He left Safeco after two years to start his own private practice. Through the years, Gary partnered with several other attorneys and met the first of his current partners more than 25 years ago and was a founding principal in his current law firm of Vander Wel, Jacobson, & Kim, PLLC with its office in Bellevue, Washington. The firm represents clients primarily in legal matters pertaining to business, real estate, and Immigration law. Gary has been a contracts specialist for more than 40 years.

When he needed a numbers, valuation, and tax specialist to help structure clients’ business deals, he aligned with a non-attorney Larry Morrison more than 20 years ago. It was this affiliation that created the educational piece to Gary’s career. He and Larry have since worked with professional organizations around the country presenting seminars on business succession planning for buying, selling and merging companies.  They also do extensive internal succession planning.  The firm represent a broad array of clients, from small individually owned companies, to larger firms doing business thoughout the United States and internationally.

Over the years, Gary and his family spent their vacations enjoying boating in the San Juan Islands. Gary and his family loved the area so much that they eventually bought a home in Anacortes, Washingon, and spent part of their time living in Kirkland and part of their time in Anacortes; which is how Gary came to open the firm's present branch office in Anacortes.    


Contact Gary

Similar lawyers nearby

Vander Wel, Jacobson & Kim, PLLC
1540 140th Avenue NE
Suite 200
Bellevue, WA, 98005
Vander Wel, Jacobson, & Kim, PLLC
2201 Highland Dr
Anacortes, WA, 98221
Hide locations


5.0 / 5.0
  25 customer reviews
5 Star
4 Star
3 Star
2 Star
1 Star
Posted by Anna | November 9, 2019
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Professional, knowledgeable, and responsive--high recommendation!
Gary created a complicated contract for us, and also very competently reviewed and recommended improvements to a purchase and sale agreement on our behalf. He was timely, very responsive, and great to work with!
Posted by Dan | July 2, 2015
Great Transaction Attorney!
I've had the pleasure of working with Gary, both as the attorney representing my clients (business sellers) and as the attorney representing buyers. In all cases you can count on Gary to be fair, straightforward, knowledgeable and responsive. He's burned the midnight oil and interrupted his weekend more than a few times to get documents out and keep the transaction momentum moving. Gary's a trusted attorney that I have high confidence in referring anyone to.
Read less
Posted by Corey | April 30, 2015
Superior Legal Representation
Gary Jacobson exemplifies the true meaning of an attorney at law. His personal moral standards for truth and integrity are practiced in accordance to his strong focus on strategic counsel and superior legal representation.
Posted by anonymous | April 22, 2015
Highly Recommended
Gary has been the epitome of a strong, responsive advocate for my family. He effectively and while working through some significant opposition, lead my family through the very successful, equitable and timely dissolution and distribution of two complex family limited partnerships.
Posted by Joseph | April 22, 2015
Legal Counceling/Documentation for Business Ownership Transition
Gary played a key role in assisting our firm with the corporate/legal aspects of an ownership transition that involved a total of 13 shareholders and a $13M/year professional services firm. In my opinion, Gary went above and beyod the call of duty by digging deep into the details of our agreements to insure the new ownership structure functioned as envisioned, that the existing shareholders were protected and that the new shareholders were treated fairly. A very comlplicated transaction that Gary handeled with ease and thoroughness. The best recomendation I can state is that Gary continues to act as the firm's legal councel on all matters.
Read less
Posted by Larry | April 21, 2015
Great business and transactions attorney, plus common sense and honesty
Mr. Jacobson and his firm have represented me on several occasions. The most notable was a complex case involving a firm I served as an outside director. Some issues arose with the company President that both outside directors felt needed investigation and independent legal advice. The issues were resolved successfully, and without undue expense. He has also prepared shareholders agreements, employment agreements, etc. for firms I have been involved with. When put to the test they have worked exactly as they should. Mr. Jacobson is extremely knowledgeable and has done good work for me, but the primary reason I recommend him is that he has good judgement and integrity. He's a man I know I can trust.
Read less
Posted by John | April 21, 2015
An Excellent Attorney for All Reasons!
I've know Gary personally for 60 years and as a client since he began his practice. His counsel and guidance has been instrumental in my business career as an independent pharmacy owner. His speedy and thorough assistance for incorporations, acquisitions, partnerships, divestitures, leases, vendor contracts, employment contracts, shareholder agreements, stock transfers and owner transitions have all been of the highest value. In addition, personal advice on real estate transactions and referrals to other attorneys when needed has all been excellent. He is also extremely sensitive and thoughtful in delicate situations, yet strong in fundamental advice. I can only give Gary my highest recommendation.
Read less
Posted by David | April 16, 2015
Excellent Service. Very knowledgable
I've worked with Gary for many years. He has helped us with an employee non-compete, business sale, business buy/sell contract and many other corporate documents.
Posted by Greg | April 15, 2015
Gary Jacobson is awesome...every time.
Gary is very bright, insightful, responsive, and helps us put items together that make sense for all parties. We have worked together for almost 20 years and he has done our firm's operating agreement, buy-sell agreement, employment non-piracy agreement, and more thna a dozen acquistion agreeements. I would recommend Gary very highly and without hesitation. He is a very trustworthy advisor to our firm.
Read less
Posted by Will Schwenning Jr | April 15, 2015
Insurance Agency Owner
I was introduced to Gary in 2011. I was in the process of changing from a "Captive Insurance Agency Owner" to an "Independent Insurance Agency Owner". Gary guided me through the purchase of an Insurance Book of business I was purchasing. Gary drew up a 2 phase purchase agreement that protected me as the buyer and the seller. Gary also drew up several 1099 contracts and W-2 employee contracts for me as well. Gary was instrumental in the purchase of my Insurance Book of Business and worked with the sellers attorney to get the deal completed. I use Gary's services regularly to assist in my day to day functions of my business. I have recommended Gary to several of my friends and would not hesitate to refer Gary at anytime to any one in need of a quality, trustworthy attorney.
Read less
Posted by Bill | April 15, 2015
Gary is on my speed dial for ”Small Business Attorney”.
Small Business Owners need an expert in small business matters. Especially when it comes to selling their life’s work. As a Business Broker I’ve worked with Gary and have referred Clients to him for over 20 years. Gary understands that business transitions between willing Sellers and willing Buyers are not adversarial encounters. He is tops among my hand-full of trusted “GO TO” Business Attorneys.
Read less
Posted by Michael Otness | April 13, 2015
Insurance Agency Purchase
Gary has help with two agency purchases and the employment contracts as needed. Very quick response and with a down to earth approach. Will use him again if the situation arises.
Posted by Allan | December 3, 2010
Transaction Advisory Expert
Gary worked with me through the acquisition process of a commercial bakery specializing in sales to upper tier restaurants. His specialized experience in mergers and acquisitions enabled us to design negotiation strategies, stucture a transaction, protect position and limit risk. He was always professional, helpful and available.
Read less
Posted by anonymous | November 28, 2010
A client since 1991
In 1991, Gary represented the SELLER of a company I purchased. When the deal was paid off early, I approached Gary to establish general legal counsel for ongoing operations as well as incorporating two additional companies in 1993. All companies had Management Shareholder Agreements and Gary administered all stock transactions. The company purchased in 1991 was sold for cash in 1999, and a completely separate corporation was purchased/formed. The first company was a C corporation and the following companies were S corporations. Gary completed the sale of all companies by 2005 as well as the sale of my waterfront residence in 2010. I am writing this review from Antigua, Guatemala, where my wife and I study Spanish as we prepare to give back to the local communities. See for micro-finance opportunities. My son purchased a company in Seattle in 2006 and Gary structured the deal and continues as general counsel. When faced with the threat of unionization or sexual harassment claims, Gary immediately referred me to legal experts that specialized in those areas.
Read less
Posted by Larry | November 17, 2010
Honest, ethical, experienced, and practical attorney
Gary has been the attorney I turn to with all my business legal questions and issues for many years. I value his practical advice as much as his legal expertise. Most of all, I TRUST him.
Posted by Lynne | November 17, 2010
Highest Recommendation
Gary completed a comprehensive employment contract for my use in the personnel management of my accounting firm. I was grateful for his business knowledge, professionalism, and recommendations during the creation of this contract. Because of his professional integrity and depth of knowledge, I also feel lucky to have the opportunity to refer my clients to Gary when they need his expertise.
Read less
Posted by Marc | November 10, 2010
Gary Is A True Professional
I have worked with Gary several times over the years with some very detailed issues. I cannot recommend him enough. He listens, responds, and acts with precision that reflects his wealth of experience. When we get to areas outside of his expertise he has given spot-on references that I continue to work with in my team. I am the owner of a Defense Department manufacturing business that has supplied over 300,000 Warfighters, and I continue working with Gary knowing he has my back.
Read less
Posted by Ed | November 8, 2010
Gary Jacobson receives my highest recommendation
I have used the legal services of Gary E. Jacobson for the last 35 years. During that time, there have been over 100 occasions where I have required his legal work and advice for agreements, purchases, sales, and regarding routine as well as complex legal issues. Mr. Jacobson has always provided exceptional and timely legal work and advice, and he has never over billed for his time. I have had the opportunity to work with numerous lawyers and law firms. Mr. Jacobson receives the highest marks for his intellect, professionalism, and most importantly, his integrity and his commitment to serving my needs as his client.
Read less
Posted by Ben | November 8, 2010
Chiro-Contract Agreement
I had asked Mr. Jacobson to help me with a contract to bring in a partner into my practice. I felt that Mr. Jacobson was very responsive and knowledgeable in handling all the issues involved. I definitely trust and respect him.
Posted by Lonnie | November 8, 2010
Always works from fairness principles
Gary Jacobson provides conservative, actionable advice on even the most complex business situation. He is very intuitive, considering the feelings of other parties in any matter and the importance those feelings have in motivating decisions or facilitating solutions. Gary has connections in the business community that bring balance and technical background to his counsel. His extensive professional network creates a living library to augment his own legal experience. I highly recommend Gary Jacobson, especially for business transitions and internal ownership perpetuation.
Read less
View less reviews


We have not found any cost information for this lawyer

Contact for Details


AVVO RATING 8.0 (Excellent)

Work Experience

  • Principal
  • Vander Wel, Jacobson & Kim, PLLC
  • 1987 - Present
  • Vice President & General Counsel
  • Cornerstone Advisors, Inc.
  • 1983 - 1985
  • Vice President & General Counsel
  • Commonwealth Properties
  • 1979 - 1982
  • Principal
  • Keller, Jacobson, Hole, Jackson & Wentz
  • 1975 - 1979
  • Staff Counsel
  • Safeco Insurance Company
  • 1973 - 1975
  • Civil Deputy
  • King County Prosecutor's Office
  • 1970 - 1972
View all work experience


  • University of Washington School of Law
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 1970
  • University of Washington
  • BA - Bachelor of Arts
  • 1966


  • Anacortes Chamber of Commerce
  • Board Member
  • 2013 - Present
  • Skagit County Bar Association
  • Member
  • 2013 - Present
  • Economic Development Association of Skagit County
  • Member
  • 2010 - Present
  • Washington State Bar Association
  • Member
  • 1970 - Present
  • Business Transition Network
  • Co-Founder
  • N/A
  • Bellevue Business Roundtable
  • Chairman
  • 1998 - 2003
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • English

Honors and Awards

  • Peer Review Rated
  • Martindale-Hubbell
  • 2020


  • Northwest Business Monthly
  • How To Buy, Sell, Merge or Perpetuate a Business
  • 2009
  • The Contracts Company
  • Library of Agency Agreements
  • 2005
  • CNA Commercial Insurance Guide
  • Field Training Manual, a Guide to Perpetuating and Selling Agencies
  • 1998

Speaking Engagements

  • Skagit Women in Business Featured Speaker
  • Corporations and LLCs
  • 2010
  • Insurance Agency Valuation Podcast/Newsletter
  • Perpetuation: Special Factors
  • 2010
  • Economic Development Association of Skagit County Seminar
  • Succession Planning and Exit Strategies
  • 2009
  • The Inside Track Weekly
  • How to Sell Your Agency
  • 2007
  • Anacortes Chamber of Commerce Business Development Seminar
  • The Business Ownership Seminar
  • 2007
  • Washington PIA Convention
  • Agency Compensation After Spitzer: Tsunami Warning
  • 2005
  • PIA Western Alliance Seminar
  • Agency Operation and Compensation After Spitzer, plus Agency Valuation, Perpetuation, and Succession
  • 2005
  • PIA of Oregon Continuing Education Seminar
  • What Agents Need to Know: The Compensation Disclosure Amendment to the Producer Licensing Model Act, Including the Marsh/Spitzer Settlement
  • 2005
  • PIA Oregon Continuing Education Seminar
  • The Basics: How to Buy and Sell Agencies
  • 2004
  • PIA of Montana Continuing Education Seminar
  • What Every Agent Needs to Know: How to Buy or Sell an Agency
  • 2004
View all speaking engagements

Attorney endorsements

Received (2)
Given (1)
Endorse Gary
Contracts and agreements Attorney | May 27
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"I have known Gary for 5 years. He is an outstanding lawyer who is committed to his clients. I strongly endorse this lawyer's work."
Business Attorney | Apr 15
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I have had the privilege of knowing and working with Gary ("Jake") for many years. I consistently hear positive comments from his satisfied clients. He is an outstanding lawyer and outstanding person."
Estate planning

Avvo Contributions

This attorney hasn't created any legal answers in Q&A or legal guides recently on Avvo.

Bellevue Contracts and agreements Lawyer Gary E. Jacobson
Gary E. Jacobson
Contracts and agreements Attorney
Bellevue, WA