My Shingle

March 2005

Consumers Can Buy Legal Advice in Supermarkets Across the Pond

March 21, 2005 by Carolyn Elefant

Here’s a story, Plan for Supermarket Legal Advice (BBC, 3/20/05) about a proposal that will shake up the legal profession in England and Wales by allowing commercial businesses to own and run law firms.   The intent of the proposal, known as the Tesco law, is to make legal services “a better deal for consumers.”  Under […]

Read more Ethics Issues 12 comments

Screening Clients – Rules and Exceptions

March 17, 2005 by Carolyn Elefant

This article, In Search of the Perfect Client, Joanne Cronrath Bamberger, Small Firm Business (3/14/05) offers up the standard, perfunctory advice on screening clients.  Red flags include refusal to pay a retainer fee (a sign of future collection difficulties), number of prior attorneys and whether the client seems difficult.  Not much new here. If you […]

Read more Client Relations 6 comments

Anonymous Associates

March 11, 2005 by Carolyn Elefant

I’ve always explained that the reason I went solo was because a big firm wasn’t big enough.  Not big enough for my ego or aspirations, not even big enough to fit two tiny words – my name – on the door.  Apparently, these days, a big firm isn’t big enough (in heart, not size) to […]

Read more Legal Profession Trends 14 comments

Clout Trumps – So Use It to Market

March 10, 2005 by Carolyn Elefant

This article, Unusual Ally Came to Jain’s Rescue:  SEC, Seattle Times (3/10/05) – about a former SEC counsel-turned-private lawyer who finagled a deal for a client found guilty of violating insider-trading rules whereby the SEC wound up filing an amicus brief on the client’s behalf – isn’t about solos per se.  Rather, it’s about the […]

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When a Solo Goes to Trial

March 10, 2005 by Carolyn Elefant

It’s hard enough getting ready for a trial, but as a solo, there’s even more to think about because of staffing constraints, as Kimberly Fanady points out  in this piece, Flying Solo at Trial, Small Firm Business (3/10/05).  Among other tips, Fanady suggests retaining a temp to put files and exhibits in order and calling […]

Read more Big Law/Small Law 4 comments

Security Breach At LEXIS

March 10, 2005 by Carolyn Elefant

This article, Personal Data Bared in LexisNexis breach,  Oregonlive.com (3/10/05) reports that intruders managed to steal customer passwords and access personal information from LexisNexis’ Accurint database.  Lexis acquired Seisent, parent company of Accurint, (a darling of solo practitioners given its low cost capability of tracking people and assets), in August 2004 – and at that […]

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Lawyers Beware: The World [Wide Web] Is Watching

March 7, 2005 by Carolyn Elefant

David Giacalone has a great post at f/k/a that should serve as a reminder to unscrupulous, unethical or merely careless or inept attorneys that even if the Bar can’t – or won’t penalize you for your actions, The World Wide Web Is Watching, nonetheless.  David describes a couple of situations where lawyers’ errors – such […]

Read more Ethics & Malpractice Issues 2 comments

Looking at the Yellow Pages from A Client’s Perspective

March 7, 2005 by Carolyn Elefant

Evan Schaeffer of Legal Underground examines, from a prospective client’s perspective,  what it must be like to hire a lawyer from the Yellow Pages in his most recent podcast installment of  Law Related Things That Suck. After listening to Evan, you’ll realize, if you don’t already, that the yellow pages may not be the best […]

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Some Poor Advice on Rainmaking in Law Practice Today

March 6, 2005 by Carolyn Elefant

Usually, I like to highlight articles that our audience should read and follow.  But here’s one that you really shouldn’t – unless you want to learn what not to do to market a practice.  This article from the usually valuable publication, Law Practice Today contains some really poor advice on rainmaking in its monthly Meet […]

Read more Marketing & Making Money 5 comments

Lawyers Serving Those Who’ve Served

March 6, 2005 by Carolyn Elefant

There’s an interesting practice area desribed in this article, Lawyers Look for Errors in VA Claims, Beth Silver, Twincities.com (3/6/05):  Veteran’s Law.  As the article reports, two Minneapolis attorneys, Tracy Capistrant and Becca Wong specialize in recovering government checks for the disabled veterans who visit their law office after years of fighting the Veterans Administration.  […]

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