Everything Wrong with Legal Hiring: Searching for Dick Awesome, Esq.

It seems like every now and again Keith over at Associate’s Mind, the father of LawyerSmack, and I end up focusing on the same topics for a few days in a row. This time it all comes about out of an ad for an attorney and the ridiculous requirements and pay expectations that the firm wanted met in order to hire a lawyer to assist.  I’m not going to do a lot of talking to describe the ad, because you can watch the bullshit flow over on the LawyerSmack website about the anger and frustration of the attorneys that gather around the virtual water cooler (Keith has cleaned the joint up a bit from the days when it was more of a dive bar, and even insisted that sentient whiskey glasses identify themselves in the chat by their real names and everything).  But here’s the gist of the ad’s requirements:

  1. 5-7 years of experience;
  2. 20 cases tried to a verdict, unless you’re a former prosecutor, then at least 80 cases tried to a verdict;
  3. Answers to an attorney with 30 years of experience, and;
  4. Pay is $55,000 to $90,000.

While they’re at it, they’d like to find an attorney that owns his own rainbow-shitting unicorn, lives in a castle made of gingerbread, and can melt the faces of opposing counsel by singing eldritch verses in court. I mean, if we’re going to go all out on this shit, let’s go balls to the goddamn wall crazy with it.

Because the lawyer these guys are looking for?  It doesn’t fucking exist.

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No Time To Die: Lawyers and Sick Time

Hey! I’m back! Sort of. To describe the current situation, let me put it like this: Tony Bennett may have left his heart in San Francisco, but I left a piece of my hip on the roadside, my cognizance of situations in a bottle of painkillers, and my snark and wit in a goddamn bedside commode chair. So bear with me today as I shift uncomfortably from side to side and start talking about a recent realization that shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone in the business of being legal: Namely, even when you’re ill, injured, or dying there’s no such thing as a day off in the life of a lawyer.

And that, folks, can really suck. Because, in the past, I’ve written about how the work-life balance for attorneys is a thing that we talk about, normally somewhere around the time we discuss our belief in fairies and how the government is turning the frogs gay. This is the sort of thing that people search through law libraries for, hoping to take a blurry photograph of the attorney that somehow found a way to preserve his sanity and health while being reasonably successful at his job. Frankly, as my good friend Jeremy Richter pointed out yesterday, we simply are not a profession that rewards people for deciding they want to take a vacation, spend time with family, unwind with a movie, or enjoy the holidays without worrying about what others may think.

And we are definitely not a profession that believes in the concept of being sick or injured and needing to recuperate.

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Malpractice and You: Suck Less

Good morning you reprobates! Welcome to the after-school special edition of Lawyers & Liquor where I’m gonna make it clear that just because you have a law license doesn’t mean you’re immune from being a complete dumbass. Yep, that’s right, today we’re gonna dive deep into the realm controlled by USAffinity and shit like that to talk about the definite truth that at some point in your legal career, you’re going to commit malpractice.

Because you will commit malpractice.

Shit, I’ve committed malpractice before.

It’s surprisingly fucking easy to do.

What’s that? You want a fucking story about how goddamn easy it is to commit malpractice? Sure, why the fuck not.

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Rules of Law: Read Your Procedural Rules Before Filing

Alright, so you guys may remember that, in the past, I’ve had some words for Tiffany Dehen, the USD law graduate who was impersonated on Twitter, lost her mind, and began to sue everyone in the world for $100,000,000 in order to be compensated for the grave slight of there being a Twitter account out there with three followers in her name.  You may even recall that I previously begged her, in an open letter, to, in the words of that goddamn ice princess, let it go. That didn’t happen, and yesterday both Twitter and USD filed briefs seeking to have the whole thing dismissed.

This isn’t a post about Twitter, but…you guys…how strangely awesome is it that USD Law essentially moved to dismiss a complaint filed by one of their own graduates on the grounds that someone they gave a fucking JD to doesn’t understand the basic procedural rules everyone is taught in the first year of law school? What world is this, even? That’s like the very definition of a pyrrhic victory!

You don’t know what that means? Oh my god…I’m dealing with children. Google it. I’m not your goddamn history teacher. By the way, go smack your history teacher.

Anyhow, despite being really goddamn amusing, there’s an important lesson for lawyers in the Tiffany Saga today, and that is learn the goddamn procedural rules that will govern your case.  Jesus christ, this should be like simple background shit for most of you by now, but I’m personally seeing attorneys with years of practice fuck shit up procedurally simply because they can’t be bothered to go on the local court website and read the rules and procedures.

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Stop Living Like a Pro Athlete: 5 Financial F’Ups of Small Lawyers, Part 2

Alright, so on Monday I covered two of the financial mistakes that small-firm and solo lawyers tend to make that leave them holding tin cups in front of bar association functions crying “Alms!” I promised you guys we’d continue this series, and conclude it, today, so in order to do that we’re not going to spend a lot of time prefacing crap this morning. Instead, let’s get right into talking about Financial F’Ups 3-5 for the Small Lawyer!

If you need a refresher on the shit I told you Monday, and you may because you assholes leak like a sieve when it comes to retaining information, you can re-read Part 1 here, which advises you to plan to make less money and live frugally. I don’t really expect you assholes to listen to me, because as a whole lawyers suck at taking advice from other people.

Continue reading “Stop Living Like a Pro Athlete: 5 Financial F’Ups of Small Lawyers, Part 2”