Thursday, July 12, 2012

Calming The Angry Client

Family law is an emotional practice area.  Our clients are going through a nightmarish experience.  It is common for their frustrations to erupt, and for those frustrations to be targeted at the lawyer who is working them through the process.  Being on the receiving end of the need to blame is an all too frequent event for family law lawyers.  As family law lawyers we are going to experience them, and they do take their toll on us.  How can we make it better?

At the attorney@work blog Marilyn Astin Tarlton has a great post on just this topic!  Here is how Marilyn sets it up:
You know the scenario. It’s the end of the day. The phone rings and you pick it up knowing you really shouldn’t. You should just let it go to voicemail, pack up your laptop and go home.
“What the bleep is this?” are the first words you hear. It’s your client. The one for whom you’ve worked like a dog, around the clock, for the past two weeks. It seems this month’s bill has arrived and he’s in flames! Now what?
Her advice:
First, just breathe. Then try not to:
  • Argue with him about it
  • Tell him it is someone else’s fault
  • Ask him to call you back tomorrow
  • Hang up on him
The article continues on with more great advice that we can all use.  Please click here to read the entire post.

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Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Deposition Transcript App

I think depositions are a great tool for family law lawyers (provided your client can cover the costs).  They allow for spontaneous questioning.  They commit the witness then and there, without time for lawyer assistance and reflection.  In California, with our liberal discovery rules, depositions can avoid a lot of the objection games that goes on with written discovery.

Deposition practice has long been the beneficiary of innovative technology.  The transcription machine is the perfect example.  The list goes on:  real time; video depositions; remote depositions and depositions by Skype; transcript review and annotation software.  This evolution of technology has now come to the tablet platform.

My virtual friend Ted Brooks, at his Court Technology and Trial Presentation Blawg, has written another great app review.  This time he looks at  TranscriptPad.  Ted introduces the app as follows:
If you’re in need of a quick and easy method of reviewing depos, running searches, assigning issue codes, adding notes and marking designations with your iPad, Lit Software, makers of the popular TrialPad app, have another nice app for you. In addition to managing the transcripts, TranscriptPad allows you to import related depo exhibits, so you can take a look at them as well. “You can drive in a nail with a brick, but a hammer will do a much better job” according to Ian O’Flaherty, Managing Partner at Lit Software, LLC.
I have taken a look at TranscriptPad, and I like it.  I haven't shelled out the $50 for it yet, but I like what I have seen.  To get a real feel for it though, you need to read Ted's review.  Please click here for a look.

Please visit for more information about Harding & Associates Family Law

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Solo nets Supreme Court win!

I know this has nothing to do with technology, but I think it is pretty cool. Andrew Simpson is a sole practitioner in the U.S. Virgin Is...