My Shingle

December 2004

A Client’s Role in Case Strategy

December 14, 2004 by Carolyn Elefant

Yesterday’s 8-0 decision by the United States Supreme Court in Florida v. Nixon found that an attorney’s concession of guilt in a capital case does not give rise to a constitutional ineffective assistance of counsel claim even when the client has not expressly consented to the attorney’s strategy.  The Court’s decision reversed the lower court […]

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Ring Around the Jury?

December 14, 2004 by Carolyn Elefant

Randy Cohen’s Ethics Column addresses the question of whether an unmarried lawyer should wear a wedding band to impress a jury.  The lawyer’s colleagues advised that he would have better appeal with a wedding band.  So the lawyer wondered whether this was deceiptful – or a simple cosmetic measure no different from wearing glasses to […]

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Free Marketing Seminar

December 13, 2004 by Carolyn Elefant

I don’t know much about this teleconference seminar  scheduled for tomorrow except for the fact that it’s free and geared for solo and small firm lawyers.  I’m planning on calling in and will post on what I’ve learned.  If you do go to sign up, please indicate that you learned about the conference from MyShingle. […]

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Happy 2nd Birthday to MyShingle!

December 12, 2004 by Carolyn Elefant

On December 10, 2004, MyShingle turned two.  Of course, for now you’ll have to take my word for it since I still can’t access my archives to prove it (right now, the old system is being tested and will hopefully be ready for prime time by the end of next week).  Thanks to all of […]

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A Lawyer Calls for Civility

December 12, 2004 by Carolyn Elefant

Many of us lawyers grouse about the lack of civility in the legal profession; this article, Maryland Lawyer Makes A Case for Civility reports on Rockville, Maryland attorney Steven Seltzer who’s actually trying to do something about it.  In addition to calling lawyers’ on their incivility (for example, Seltzer once wrote a letter to a […]

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Solos and Pro Bono

December 12, 2004 by Carolyn Elefant

This article, Solo and Small Firm Attorneys Lack Time for Pro Bono, NYLJ (12/13/04) reports on some of the obstacles that solo and small firms face in meeting the recommended 20 hours/year of pro bono.  The article lists the four top reasons lawyers gave for not participating in pro bono programs:  the demand of time […]

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Can An Hourly Rate Ever Be Excessive?

December 12, 2004 by Carolyn Elefant

We’ve had much discussion here over whether an hourly rate can be too low. But can an hourly rate ever be excessive?  Consider the new increases in biglaw billing rates reported in Law Firm Billing Rates Climb Even Higher, National Law Journal (12/9/04). The article reports that at the upper end, one firm charges $875/hour […]

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Wanted: Spanish Speaking Lawyers. Will Train.

December 8, 2004 by Carolyn Elefant

Here’s an interesting idea:  The Iowa Bar Association Wants Lawyers to Speak Spanish AP (December 8, 2004).   The bar would have the state’s lawyers take Spanish lessons  to help the state’s fast-growing Hispanic population.    Wonder if this might qualify as CLE?

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Making Ends Meet When Starting A Firm

December 8, 2004 by Carolyn Elefant

This article, Money Matters, from Small Firm Business (12/6/04) offers new shinglers advice on money matters, from how to make ends meet when starting out to funding retirement.  The article is really too brief to be of much value, but it does make the point about the importance of keeping overhead low in the beginning, […]

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What A Client’s Going To Do

December 6, 2004 by Carolyn Elefant

Of all of the articles written on how to best deal with clients, I find ones such as this, Learn to Love Your Lawyer , Mark Obbie, (December 2004) most valuable.  Why’s that?  Because Obbie’s article provides how-to advice on what clients should do to manage their attorneys.  By reading articles like Obbie’s, we […]

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