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Friday, February 24, 2012

Time is money....even if I am a free lawyer

One of the things on the long list of bad things about being a "free" lawyer is that no one respects your time.  If the judge sets a hearing for 9am - he may stroll into the courtroom at 9:30.  If opposing counsel says they'll "get right back to you later today", what they really mean is 'ask me again in a month'.  When you set a clients appointment for 2pm, they will show up at 12 noon and be completely disgusted with the fact that you have the nerve to be eating lunch.


They will show up at 3:30 pm, THE NEXT DAY and swear YOU'RE the one with the wrong appointment date and time.

In my personal life, I like to be on time.  Sometimes, I realize, I even reach the point of being anal about it.  I HATE being late: to appointments, meetings, church, work, the movies-it really doesn't matter, if there is a particular time I am supposed to be there, that is what time I want to be there.  Period.  This is not to say I have never been and will never be late, I am human.  But when I'm late I get this sick feeling in the pit of my stomach and I am calling/texting/emailing/sending out pigeon messengers to the person or people waiting for me.

I digress.

It's not even about me.  What makes people not respect my time as a 'free' lawyer so horrible is that they don't seem to care that it takes time away from other cases and clients.  While I am waiting for you to grace me with your presence, I have clients that wanted to come see me but could not, because I blocked off time for you.  While I may have felt a little under the weather this morning, I drank some OJ, took 2 Alka-Seltzer and trucked it on in to work because YOU said this was the only day your supervisor would let you off.  While I am waiting for you to finish the 'shoot-the-shit' conference you are having in chambers, I have a 16 year old client in jail whose file I would really like to be working on.

"Time is money."  That adage apparently does not ring true for attorneys with non-paying clients. 

Oh the life of a public offender...

Until next time,

Be blessed, be careful, don't confess and don't consent.