My Shingle

August 2010

Huh? Lawyer’s Overbilling Blamed on Law School’s Failure To Teach Practice Management

August 30, 2010 by Carolyn Elefant

Law schools today get a bad rap, often deservedly so. From outrageous tuition to to ineffectual, elitist law professors to fraudulent post-graduation employment statistics to failure to teach practical skills, law schools have become the scapegoats for everything wrong with the legal profession. Including theft over-billing. Yes, you read that right.  Lawyer coach Rjon Robins […]

Read more Ethics & Malpractice Issues 13 comments

Would You Advise Your Child to Take on $150k in Debt to Go to Law School?

August 27, 2010 by Carolyn Elefant

Yesterday, I received a call from one of my blog readers, somewhat out of the blue.  A rising 2L at a top tier school, the student explained that he was interested in learning more about the feasibility of starting a law practice right out of law school.  Yet as we talked more, however, it seemed […]

Read more MyShingle Solo 26 comments

My Shingle Fashion: Awesome Black Flats

August 27, 2010 by HumaRashid

Flats are complicated, ladies. Okay, no, they’re not, but writing “flats are so easy that even monkeys can wear them” wouldn’t make for much of an exposition. Really, where do you go from there? Everyone is thinking of monkeys wearing shoes, and the gravity of the moment is lost. Flats are pretty fool-proof, it’s true, […]

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MyShingle Fashion: More Work Pumps – In Technicolor!

August 27, 2010 by HumaRashid

A few posts back, I shared a bunch of high heels to wear to work. However, they were a tad on the boring side: black, and…black. That’s pretty much all there was. This time, I’m opting for a much needed injection of diversity, and sharing with you a couple of work appropriate heels that aren’t […]

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Yet Another Reason Not to Use Canned Content

August 25, 2010 by Carolyn Elefant

Courtesy of Professor Eric Goldman, here’s yet another reason to avoid canned content or ghostwritten materials in law firm newsletters, and by extension, blogs: it’s a sure-fire way to convert ordinary, First Amendment protected content into regulated advertising. Holtzman v. Turza (N.D. Ill. August 3, 2010) serves as a cautionary tale of what happens to […]

Read more Blogging 4 comments

ABA $5000 Legal Rebels Essay Contest

August 25, 2010 by Carolyn Elefant

Though I’m not an ABA member, I’d be remiss in not informing those readers who are ABA members of this year’s $5000 Legal Rebels Essay Contest, open to ABA members and solos, defined as “a lawyer practicing alone with no partners.” To enter, submit an essay, not-to-exceed-600-words, in response to the question, “What innovation will […]

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Get Jargon, Get Rid of Jargon

August 25, 2010 by Carolyn Elefant

If you’re an aficionado of legal jargon (and come on, aren’t all of us lawyers, at least when we’ve had too much to drink?), why not indulge yourself with two free e-books of jargon on project finance and corporate finance, courtesy of Latham & Watkins, with an H/T to Three Geeks & A Law Blog. […]

Read more Legal Research and Writing 1 comment

Biglaw to Yourlaw: A Trend, But Nothing New

August 25, 2010 by Carolyn Elefant

Earlier this month, both Slate and Crains New York carried articles describing the recent trend of biglaw attorneys starting their own practices. Summarizing these articles, an Above the Law post called the biglaw to yourlaw move a “new trend.” Not. Well, not if you’re a regular reader of this blog, anyway. I’ve been documenting the […]

Read more Big Law/Small Law 2 comments

The Virtual Law Office Debate: Virtually Impossible To Succeed or Not?

August 22, 2010 by Carolyn Elefant

There’s an interesting debate over at Lee Rosen’s Divorce Discourse blog, in response to his provocatively titled-post, What the Virtual Office Advocates Aren’t Telling You. Lee argues that despite all of the buzz over virtual law offices, they’re unlikely to succeed because “there’s not much demand among clients for a virtual practice.” Lee elaborates: A […]

Read more Client Service 22 comments

Why I Won’t Let My Clients Set My Fees: It’s Not Their Job to Do My Work

August 20, 2010 by Carolyn Elefant

Over at, one of my very favorite bloggers, Jordan Furlong, offers up a couple of innovative alternative billing ideas, including a recent and somewhat controversial initiative of 300 lawyer, UK-based CMS Cameron McKenna: letting clients decide what to pay. Though many might assume that if left to their own devices, clients would pay their […]

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