Hey, welcome back to Lawyers & Liquor as we start the week off with a banging of a gavel and the popping of a cold, delicious morning beer (what, that’s not a thing?) with an examination of law, law practice, and the various other sundries of legal minutia and misfeasance that has a bad habit of creeping into the day.
I’m the Boozy Barrister, and today we’re going to talk about a light subject, just a little bit of levity before you charge headlong into the hellish week that is the beginning of August. That’s right, today we’re going to talk about – and break down in terms that laymen, baby lawyers, the legal fetal collection of cells that is a law student, and even the old hands that may never have cracked a criminal guide since the bar – the many vagaries surrounding the defense of “insanity” in the American justice system…and how it differs from other mentally-based determinations you may run into in a criminal court matter.
But first, a word from our “Please Don’t Do This” Department.
Continue reading “M’Nope-in: Insanity as a Defense, Part 1.”
Ah, year another day has dawned here in the Law Offices of Boozy D. Barrister! The sun is shining, the birds are singing, the coffee is somewhat tolerable, and the “new messages” light on my phone is winking it’s red eye at me as I settle in for the week to begin. And, of course, as the very responsible attorney that sits and writes Lawyers & Liquor, a guiding resource for barely capable mouth breathers and the figurative (and sometimes literal) bed wetting baby lawyers of the legal sphere, I know that those messages must be handled in the correct manner:
Saved for thirty days if the client isn’t in years and panicking and waiting for them to call again, because as every good lawyer will tell you it’s only important if the client calls at least two times.
But you really shouldn’t be doing that, and I think you all know that. First, it’s a damn good way to make sure you spend an entire day in the office doing absolutely nothing except listening to voice mails and making papier mache heads out of those little “while you were out” slips. Second, it’s a damn good way to lose a ton of business in a really goddamn quick manner. Trust me, I should know, because I’ve been there myself more than once in my career.
You should always be on top of your contacts and communications, which is why a lot of lawyers are looking at getting a sharepoint calendar to manage that sort of thing. Clients like someone who remembers what they’ve talked about, when, and where. Best of all it can improves the likelihood of them recommending another client your way. I wish I knew that from the get-go.
Continue reading ““Why Don’t He Write?” – Thoughts on Good Client Communication”
Welcome to another beautiful morning here at Lawyers & Liquor, where I, the Boozy Barrister, talk about whatever has popped into my tiny little head in the last 74 hours since the last time we spoke. You know, on Monday I disclosed that, for the past several months, my office has been without support staff. As such, the inmates are running the asylum in our offices as attorneys do every task great and small that requires any amount of effort, not just those that require the lawyer’s expertise. In short, I’ve been reminded that the true prophets of our time, the 1980’s glam metal band Cinderella, truly knew what they were talking about when they said “You don’t know what you got (till it’s gone).”
Look at that shit! I worked in a glam metal reference. Not fucking bad if I do say so myself.
Anyhow, once the piece went up it hit me that there are some litigation fetuses out there getting ready to leave the comforting and calm bosom of law school to enter into the world of legal practice. There may even be some placenta-encrusted baby lawyers just now struggling into their first type of legal employment. And, as we all know, those fucking jackasses in their Joseph A. Banks suits may have absolutely no clue how to handle the very same legal support staff that I am now lacking and, as a result, may be increasing their chances of either (a) unemployment in a short order or (b) finding themselves sobbing under their desk as Cinderella plays on Spotify repeatedly, gorging themselves on an entire fucking ice cream cake because they can’t figure out how to conference in a three-way call with a client and another party.
But never fear, my little fuck-a-dos, because Boozy is here to help – or at least harangue – you with five simple tips you need to remember about your legal support staff.
Continue reading “How to Deal With Legal Support Staff: A Refresher Course”
Welcome back to another week of wonderful wastrels in the practice of law! I’m your host, the Boozy Barrister, and this here is the grand return of Lawyers & Liquor to the World Wide Web. I’d like to take a moment today and speak about the thing that’s been on the forefront of my mind over the past few months as I’ve drowned in a sea of manila folders and legal pads, and that’s the importance of support staff on your law practice. More importantly, what happens when you go the better part of a year without any support staff, and how this is a neverending nightmare of administrative tasks that suck away every moment of an attorney’s day.
Kind of appropriate that we’re having this little talk about the same time as Administrative Professionals Day, eh? Speaking of which, that would be on April 24th, this upcoming Wednesday, so make sure to get your secretary, receptionist, or that cranky elderly paralegal that looks at you like you’re a lower life form to be scraped off their fashionable flats something nice. May I suggest you forego the flowers and card and just buy them a nice wine, then give them permission to drink it at their desk? Otherwise…well…
You might end up like me.
Continue reading “Like An Old Bra, I Have No Support.”
Welcome back to Lawyers & Liquor on this the first posting day of the year 2019. I, the Boozy Barrister, hope you all enjoyed your evening of watching the clock count down to midnight and your holiday spent in the office behind a locked door frantically catching up on all of the end of the month shit that you’re expected to do as a practitioner of law.
Last time we discussed CLE hours, and that kicked me off in a whole new thing we’ll continue today. Meanwhile, I finally verified that the CLE hours I gained over the past weekend by sitting in a crowded room and listening to people drone the fuck on and on about topics that were, at best, barely within the wheelhouse of the type of law I practiced.
And isn’t that just about the truth of the matter? I mean, the whole purpose behind the CLE program is to make sure the public received services from attorneys that have remained up to date on the practice of law and the requirements related thereto. You certainly don’t want some dipshit counselor who may or may not believe Reagan is still president citing case law that’s been overturned for two fucking decades, right? So, I mean, making attorneys scramble like chickens with their heads cut off every year to get those hours together, that’s a good thing, right? It keeps us honest.
First, never use the words “honest” and “attorney” together again, people will think there’s something wrong with you. Second, the mandatory CLE requirements are, in and of themselves, problematic even when looked at in the light of their alleged purpose of ensuring attorneys remain up to date on the law. And we’re gonna talk about some of those problems today.
Continue reading “Constant Low Effort, Part 2: The Practical Problems with CLE Requirements”