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November 16, 2005

True Service, The First Post and "What About Clients?"

If you are new to this blawg, The First Post, below, explains what it's about:

Reviews on lawyers always have ranged from architects of great nations and the world's commercial markets to necessary evils who add little value to any project. We are said to be manipulators with at best convenient notions of truth. And horror stories about our botched or inattentive services are legion.

True service to clients: are we delivering this and, if we aren't, can we talk about why?

Do we lawyers have a “we versus them” or adversarial mentality about clients when our main focus should be doing the job we promised to do and protecting clients from third parties or bad events -- the real “them” -- which would harm our clients?

Has lawyer camaraderie evolved into such clubiness that we have lost sight of the client’s primacy?

Do we regularly lie to and slight our clients? (Professionally, is that really any different than cheating on our spouses?)

Are there built-in barriers which prevent true service to the client? (Are contingency fee arrangements with clients a built-in conflict of interest which can never be justified -- even in the name of “access to the court system?” When we represent insurance companies, are we fair to the real clients -- the insureds? Will we ever put the interests of the insureds first?)

Are lawyer jokes funny to us because they sound like the truth?

Has the overpopulation of markets with lawyers forced us into a free-for-all?

Do many of us wind up selling clients short because we are hopelessly disillusioned or burned out?

In short, did we forgot the main event -- the clients themselves?

Posted by JD Hull at November 16, 2005 01:18 PM


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