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Solo In Chicago

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Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Lawyer Civility

I must admit that I kind of chuckle when I constantly read about various bar leaders and supreme court judges constantly harping on the subject of lawyer civility. Not because I don't think it's a legitimate concern for bar leaders to have, but it often seems like it's something these folks who are a long way from the front lines of our court systems like to talk about without actually experiencing the day-to-day grind of say traffic or domestic relations court on a regular basis. Personally I think lawyer civility is important because what's really far more important is representing your client's best interests. And if you're a total jerk to opposing counsel you're generally impeding your client's best interests and likely costing her far more $$$.

Now back to the real world (the hearing rooms at 32 W. Randolph), I don't know if people were on edge because of the rain this morning or what. But my opposing IDHFS lawyer was VERY uncivil. Just incredibly so. And it was an appearance by me not to oppose what was being done (a child support extension beyond a child's 18th birthday since the child hasn't graduated high school). I was there just to see proof that the child was still enrolled in school and then I'd be willing to have an Agreed Order entered. Yet this lawyer wouldn't give me a copy of the letter from the school (without conflict), she got upset when I wanted to review the Order that she drafted before it got entered, and she asked me why I stayed in the hearing room after our case was over. Frankly I think her problem she was a newbie attorney who's lawyer image was based more on television than reality and she's with IDHFS so she's accountable to no one. Happy Wednesday!

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