My Shingle

July 2008

Laid Off By Cadwalader? Why Not Solo by Choice?

July 30, 2008 by Carolyn Elefant

This post is for the 96 Cadwalader attorneys who were pink slipped today.   Let me be blunt:  consider starting a law firm.  No, don’t do it now while you’re still nursing your wounds; getting axed is never pleasant even when it’s not your fault (and hey, we all know that it’s economics pure and simple).  […]

Read more Biglaw Practice and Issues 4 comments

Greatest American Lawyer’s Rejoinder to the Well Drafted Retainer

July 29, 2008 by Carolyn Elefant

In a response to my earlier post, The Well Drafted Retainer, my blogging colleague Enricho Schaefer ponders whether the traditional retainer is outdated.  Schafer argues that the complexity of retainer agreements complicates relationships with clients rather than facilitating them.  Schaefer explains that his firm memorializes the attorney-client agreement with an email listing the tasks to […]

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NEW- Free e-book: Social Networking for Lawyers: The What, Why and How

July 27, 2008 by Carolyn Elefant

This past Friday, I hosted a proof of concept course on Social Networking for Lawyers.  As part of the course materials, I prepared a 30 page ebook, entitled Social Networking for Lawyers: What, Why & How that gives an overview of social networking tools for lawyers (the “what”), describes how these tools can help build […]

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Should the Law Marketing Message Fit the Medium?

July 24, 2008 by Carolyn Elefant

Lawyers sell advice and legal services.  So should lawyer marketing focus on, or educate clients about what lawyers provide – or try to identify ways to get in front of prospective clients for any reason.  That’s the question that law marketer Russ Lawson considers in this post which discusses a  99 cent/gallon gas promotion by […]

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Even As Biglaw Gets Bigger, Opportunities for Solo and Small Firms Remain

July 24, 2008 by Carolyn Elefant

Seems that every day, biglaw just keeps getting bigger.   And indeed, that may be the only solution if firms are to continue to sustain what Professor Bill Henderson refers to as Cravath Model, whereby firms pay top dollar for top lawyers (or more accurately, what they define as top lawyers, meaning GPA, law review and […]

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The Well Drafted Retainer Agreement – A Sample and A Challenge

July 13, 2008 by Carolyn Elefant

As I’ve written in Solo by Choice and discussed at my blog, a well drafted, ethically compliant retainer agreement is a lawyer’s most important tool in guarding against grievances, setting client expectations and generally, helping to create a profitable pratice.   Without a retainer, some bars won’t even let you collect your fee.  And if your […]

Read more Client Relations 7 comments

Free Foreclosure Training for Maryland Attorneys/Why Pro Bono Is A Win-Win

July 10, 2008 by Carolyn Elefant

UPDATE:  The relatively new blog, Nextlex notes these FREE PLI webinar resources on foreclosure law and predatory lending. In both my book and on this blog, I’ve written that pro bono training programs offer one of the cheapest and most effective ways to get up to speed on matters that you might handle in your […]

Read more Gaining Competence 0 comments

A Solo Blast from the Past: Professor Stephen Gillers and “I’d Rather Do It Myself”

July 6, 2008 by Carolyn Elefant

No one will understand the loneliness and fears.  Or when it comes, the exhilaration.  One morning in the second month, you may leave for work morbid and depressed.  You realize that you’re spending more time dreaming about clients than getting them.  You are sure you are headed for economic ruin.  But then, you return home […]

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My Article on Leaving A Law Firm Now Online At Complete Lawyer

July 6, 2008 by Carolyn Elefant

When I sat down to write Solo By Choice, I was surprised to find little information on the issues related to leaving a law firm, from negotiating benefits to notifying clients with the exception of   Dennis Kennedy‘s excellent chapter in the ABA’s book, Flying Solo.  Thus, I devoted a section of SBC to these […]

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From Reader Michael Smith: A Checklist for Opening A Law Office

July 6, 2008 by Carolyn Elefant

Have you started the final countdown to opening your practice?  Whether you have six months or 6 week weeks until take-off, you’ll find Michael Smith’s concise article, A Checklist for Opening A Law Office from this month’s issue of the Texas Bar Journal extremely useful.   What qualifies Smith to write this piece?  Well, he started […]

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