February 8, 2007

Time in Court

Feels like I've been in court way too much recently. Nothing is getting done back in the office. There's been a new group of tenants-defense attorneys showing up, doing things that I have significant questions about -- soliciting clients in the hallways of the courtroom, mainly. They claim to be true believers; they won't stipulate to the commissioner and insist on having the trials before full judges. They've tried several cases and it really slows things down. The partners are convinced that in the long run, this is good for us, but it's quite frustrating.

This is compounded by the fact that the courts themselves have an overflow of criminal work recently. Two out of the last three days, the unlawful detainer court has been displaced by another court hearing overflow misdemeanor arraignments. All this morning, it was people driving without licenses while my clients sat around waiting for their cases to be called. My firm loses money, I lose time to get other work done, and my clients -- whether in contested matters or not -- wind up losing money.

I don't mind being in court, or trying cases. It's actually kind of fun. But it does seem like it's been chewing up a whole lot of my time. And I'm apparently missing out on important events. It's bad for the morale, especially when The Wife has been sick and not much fun at home and I've been hit with a bunch of teaching preparation to do for both my live and online classes. It makes me feel as though I'm losing some focus; being "ON," dealing with the pace of court, and the pressure of holding clients' hands and dealing with an occasionally pushy opposing counsel is draining.

Well, hopefully, this is just a spike in our workflow that will resolve in a few weeks.

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