Richard S. Starling Partner

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Rick is a fund formation lawyer with over 20 years of experience representing investment managers in the establishment of private funds and related products and representing institutional investors with respect to alternative investments.

Rick’s experience spans the spectrum of private funds and other alternative investments and related transactions, including buyout, venture capital, secondary, hedge, hybrid, real estate, and funds of funds, as well as SMAs, funds of one, secondary transactions, co-investments, investment vehicles for independent sponsors, and other customized transactions. He also frequently represents real estate developers in capital-raising and related activities.  Rick’s vast investor-side experience helps bring to bear an intimate knowledge of market terms, investor concerns, and different ways to document funds and transactions that provides unique added value both to fund sponsor clients and to investor clients.

Rick’s work in the fund formation area also includes advising clients with respect to registration under and compliance with the Investment Advisers Act and similar state laws, along with other regulatory and compliance matters such as compliance with the Investment Company Act, the Securities Act and other federal and state securities laws. He also works with clients on internal governance and structural issues unique to the private investment industry.

Rick has also represented clients in other investment and corporate transactions, and, as an extension of his transactional work, he has often advised clients on business formations, significant commercial contracts and other general legal matters.


    • Represented a middle-market buyout fund manager in the raising of funds with over $3 billion in investor commitments.*
    • Represented an investment manager in the raising of equity for three transactions as an independent sponsor and then in the formation of its first middle-market buyout fund, with over $200 million in investor commitments.*
    • Represented a growth equity firm in the establishment of a fund with target capital commitments of $850 million.*
    • Represented a venture capital firm in the establishment of its first fund, with target capital commitments of $50 million.*
    • Represented a captive fund manager in its spinout from a leading financial institution.*
    • Represented a fund of funds manager in the formation of a series of U.S.-focused funds of funds, a series of European-focused funds of funds, and various separately managed accounts and co-investment vehicles, with aggregate investor commitments of more than $2 billion.*
    • Represented an investment manager in the formation of a secondary fund of funds comprising interests in 26 buyout funds with aggregate investor commitments exceeding $700 million.*
    • Represented a fund sponsor in the formation of a hybrid fund with aggregate commitments of $270 million, focusing on both publicly traded securities and investments in private companies, and the subsequent conversion of that fund to a hedge fund.*
    • Represented a multifamily office in connection with the establishment of a fund of hedge funds targeting $100 million in investor subscriptions.
    • Represented managers of first-time hedge funds targeting initial commitments from $2 million to $20 million.*
    • Represented a community nonprofit hospital in the formation of a captive venture capital fund.*
    • Represented a real estate firm in connection with the recapitalization of two portfolios of commercial office and industrial properties and the offering of more than $100 million in equity interests therein and in various other capital raises.*
    • Helped organize a new company to establish a private resort and represented the business in associated capital raises of $210 million.*
    • Represented institutional investors in hundreds of commingled private equity, venture capital, real estate, hedge, and other fund investments, as well as in the establishment of managed accounts and managed account platforms and in co-investment, secondary and other transactions.*
    • Represented several clients with their registration as investment advisers, including the preparation and filing of Form ADV; the drafting of compliance manuals, codes of ethics, and other materials; and working with regulators on compliance issues.*

*Experience handled prior to joining McGuireWoods.