Monday, April 23, 2018

How Lawyers Can Avoid Ethical Pitfalls

Lawyers often face ethical challenges.  They may be under pressure to maximize legal fees billed to clients.  They may be tempted to bend the rules in order to prevail in a lawsuit.  Some clients may expect their lawyer to do whatever is necessary to achieve the client's goals, even if that means engaging in unethical behavior.  Ways to effectively handle ethical challenges such as these are discussed in my recent blog post on the Lawyer & Statesman website, "How to Handle Ethical Challenges," which can be accessed by clicking on this link.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Be Wary of Ethical Pitfalls

Most lawyers take the rules of professional responsibility seriously and try to comply with them.  Some ethical rules are fairly obvious, such as the rules requiring lawyers to safeguard confidential client information and to properly handle client funds.  Other ethical rules can be overlooked by lawyers who are so caught up in what they are doing that they lose sight of their ethical obligations.  Three common ethical pitfalls are discussed in my recent blog post on the Lawyer & Statesman website, "Ethical Pitfalls Every Lawyer Should Watch Out For," which can be accessed by clicking on this link.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Some Tips for Representing Clients Well

Highly effective lawyers represent their clients well.  They take the time to understand each client's goals and look for a creative solution for the client's legal problem.  They manage client expectations realistically and explain the legal fees and costs the client will be expected to pay.  They keep their clients informed.  These points are discussed more fully in my recent blog post on the Lawyer & Statesman website, which can be accessed by clicking on this link.

Monday, February 5, 2018

Some Tips for Negotiating Effectively

Lawyers often negotiate on behalf of their clients.  For a lawyer to be effective as a negotiator, it is important to set aside the adversarial mindset and to prepare thoroughly.  Look beyond the legal issues and understand what your client wants to achieve.  These points are discussed more fully in my recent article, "Preparing for Negotiation," in the Bar Association of San Francisco Bulletin which can be accessed online by clicking on this link.

When getting ready to negotiate, mental preparation is key.  Additional tips that will help you be effective in a negotiation session are discussed in my blog post on NWSidebar, an online publication of the Washington State Bar Association, which can be accessed by clicking on this link.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Building Trust in Professional Relationships

A solid professional relationship is based on a foundation of mutual trust.  The personal qualities and behaviors that are necessary to build trust in a professional relationship are discussed in my recent blog post on the Lawyer & Statesman website, which can be accessed by clicking on this link

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

3 Keys to Effective Advocacy

Lawyers often act as advocates on behalf of their clients.  To be effective, it is important for a lawyer to focus on the client's goals, prepare thoroughly, and be a credible advocate.  These points are discussed more fully in my blog post on the Lawyer & Statesman website, which can be accessed by clicking on this link.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Expert Witnesses

Expert witnesses who testify in litigation can express opinions about matters within the scope of their expertise.  A highly qualified and credible expert witness can help a party present a persuasive case.  Factors to consider in hiring an expert witness are discussed in my blog post, "Hiring Expert Witnesses," which can be found on the website of The Bar Association of San Francisco by clicking on this link.

When cross-examining an adverse party's expert witness, the goals are to minimize the adverse impact of the expert's testimony and, if possible, to obtain concessions from the expert that support your case.  A pretrial deposition of the expert can provide a foundation for an effective cross-examination at trial.  Specific tips for taking the deposition of an adverse expert are presented in my blog post on NWSidebar, an online publication of the Washington State Bar Association, which can be accessed by clicking on this link.