A Good Lawyer Doesn't Blame Others for His Financial Difficulties

Given the state of the U.S. economy, it's easy to fall into the habit of blaming other people for your lack of financial success. Even if he's in temporary financial distress, a good lawyer won't blame anyone but himself for his difficulties—while bad or indifferent lawyers will point their fingers at slow-paying clients, recalcitrant insurance adjusters, or judges and jury members whom they believe are “out to get them.”

A Good Lawyer Assesses His Finances Calmly and Clearheadedly

If you are having trouble making payroll at your law practice, or if you're envious of lawyers who seem to win big judgments with a snap of their fingers, it's easy to blame everyone but yourself for your current problems. When they're in the mood to complain, attorneys often point to:

  • Clients who need to be dunned three or four times before they cough up their fees, or try to negotiate the fee down after it's already been set
  • Insurance adjusters who refuse to “play ball,” unfairly (in the lawyer's eyes) withholding much-needed funds from their clients
  • Opposing lawyers who don't play fair, or who pull strings behind the scenes to obtain favorable outcomes
  • Judges who harbor persistent grudges, and won't give the lawyer or his clients a fair day in court
  • A general public disaffection with lawyers, and a corresponding desire to settle disputes outside of the legal system

The list goes on and on—you can probably add a couple items yourself. But look at it this way: what if the insurance adjuster isn't personally trying to stiff you and your client, but trying to see to his own bottom line? What if opposing counsel isn't sneaky or underhanded, but better informed about the law? When it comes down to it, you're the one who is responsible for your finances, not these third parties who (after all) are only looking after their own interests.

Ben Glass
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Ben is a nationally recognized expert in attorney marketing and the owner of Great Legal Marketing.