Style Guidelines Make a Difference – PART 1 – Setting the Stage: Some General Rules for Prospective Authors

Lawyers generally like to write. It’s in their genes. In addition to law review pieces, briefs, and other court-required documents, mastery of the written word in articles and website copy, among many other formats, can give you a leg-up in making your mark.

In this three-part series, I will discuss over-arching considerations that will help give you a “leg- up.” In the next two installments (Parts 2 and 3), I’ll discuss specific style guidelines that often make the difference between “make” or “break” re: getting published. Let’s get started.

Limited Scope Representation is not a Time to Play Fast and Loose with the Rules

Let’s review the basics. ABA Model Rule 1.2 (c) allows a lawyer to limit the scope of the representation if the limitation is reasonable under the circumstances and the client gives informed consent. In those jurisdictions that have adopted similar language, many have added a requirement that informed consent be confirmed in writing. Now as a risk guy, I like that writing requirement regardless. There are just too many word and word disputes in the world of malpractice and discipline.

Speaking personally, I’m one who believes that the movement toward limited scope representation has been a good thing and long overdue. Speaking professionally, however, I need to share a caution. Find out what that caution is.

How to Work With Freelance Lawyers, Part 2: Communication is Key to Effective Delegation

Last month, we discussed how to decide what to delegate to a freelance lawyer. Once you’ve made that decision and found a freelance lawyer to work with, it’s time to actually delegate the work.

Communication is the key to a successful engagement, and to building a productive ongoing working relationship with a freelance lawyer. What else will make your relationship profitable?

How to Work With Freelance Lawyers, Part 1: Deciding What to Delegate

You’re up to your eyeballs in work, spending late nights and weekends at the office. You know that working with a freelance lawyer can help you avoid burning out and increase your firm’s profitability, but you don’t know how to get started.

As the King of Hearts said in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland: “Begin at the beginning.” For our purposes, the beginning is deciding what to delegate.

Never Assume “It’s All Good” When Purchasing a Law Practice

Assumptions. We all make them on a daily basis. In fact, as I see it, doing so allows most days to progress with some level of predictability. For example, I often assume all my tech will function problem free, the power will stay on, and that if I need anything from anyone at the office, they’ll be available. There’s nothing wrong with my making such assumptions unless, of course, it turns out one of them is wrong and I’m not prepared to deal with the consequences. Keeping this in mind, let’s now narrow the focus and address some of the ethical missteps that can lead to trouble for the buyer of a law practice when it’s the buyer whose running with assumptions.

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