Monday, January 31, 2011

So Many Questions - Family Law

I've been enmeshed in my practice for so long I sometimes forget how intricate and complicated it can be.  Some days, like today, I meet with a myriad of people who just need to get their questions answered.  They know they are facing a complex situation that therefore feels rather daunting and rather than strike out on their own with the very real chance of striking out entirely, they seek advice from one who has been in the trenches for decades - me.

Sometimes their questions are straightforward, requiring no more than a simple, direct answer that can set their minds at ease and help them chart a clear and safe course for their new direction.  Other times their questions are complex, requiring much give and take to ferret out the nuances that can alter the course of the right answer with the slightest subtlety.

Regardless of questions simple or complex, the questions, and the questioners, are welcome at my firm.  I understand that some attorneys play hide the ball.  "If you want an answer, you have to feed the monkey."  I do understand that approach.  My education and lengthy experience have value.  But I perform no service to my community if I treat my knowledge and expertise like it's off limits to all but a select few with the green in their wallets to unhinge my jaw.

If I kept my knowledge a secret, how would a client ever know that I have any knowledge at all?  I don't see a successful interview concluding, "I know exactly what I would do and if you hire me, I'll tell you."  Suppose the poor client hires that counsel and counsel then spews something idiotic.  I don't see how that works.  Perhaps I'll get a few more decades down the road and decide that potential clients should pay me for their initial visit.  Right now that just seems cheap.

So, if you have a question, come see me.  While I cannot work for free since I'm not independently wealthy, I'll gladly, and I do mean gladly, answer your questions.

Michael Manely

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