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Solo In Chicago

...empowering the Second City's entrepreneurial legal community

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

New clients at the courthouse part II: opposing parties...

This is another potential client source to keep in mind...opposing parties. Obviously there are ethical issues to consider so keep those in mind. But this past Friday I had some post-divorce stuff in domestic relations court at Daley Center. As a side issue I withdrew from this case on Friday (long story) and as I was walking out of court the opposing party (who was not represented so I could be talking to her) asked me about some legal work related to a business that she was starting. Not sure what will come of it but it's an important and useful teaching point.

Just think about it, who sees your legal work up closely more than an opposing party? Other than your client probably no one. Obviously you'll likely be conflicted in the particular matter where that client is opposing party but for unrelated stuff in the future...these are great potential client/referral sources.

My main point is to treat the opposing party with respect and don't personalize cases. You're there to represent your client to the best of your abilities...absolutely! But, you're not their to be disrespectful or unprofessional with opposing clients. Don't personalize cases, you're the professional!! At least to me, there are few things less tacky then opposing lawyers who are getting too personally involved with clients or disparaging my client.

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