What does a lawyer do with his or her time?

Most clients have a pre conceived perception that lawyers golf and fish on a daily basis, and do not understand the legal process in general. Television has distorted the perception  giving the impression that a person can walk into a lawyer’s office the day before a jury trial and the lawyer will not only take the case, but will win it with only a few minutes with little or no preparation for court.  Because of this when clients feel the process takes too long, they get restless because they don’t understand what a lawyer does with his/her time.

KLS lawyers are busy.  Would you rather hire a busy lawyer or one that has nothing to do because of lack of experience or success?

A busy lawyer’s work is never done. KLS receives hundreds of calls a day and thousands of emails a day.  There is always work to do on someone’s case, a call to return, an email to answer, a letter to be sent, discovery to be done, a hearing to be set, a meeting with the client and witnesses, depositions, settlement offers to make, mediations, negotiations, research, documents to review, documents to prepare, preparation of trial notebooks, preparation for court, and deadlines to meet (discovery due, responses to motions that have been filed by the other side, decisions about strategy) and etc.

Court hearings, trials and appointments take up a substantial amount of time for the business day of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.  Sometimes this fills up the schedule causing appointments to be set out a week to three weeks. KLS has several lawyers who can handle your matter if the lawyer in the firm that you hired or want to hire is unavailable as quickly as you need assistance. In cases of emergency KLS can handle your matter before or after hours pursuant to the employment contract with the client.

If a lawyer is in court all day, or has been in meetings with clients or other lawyers all day, then phone calls will likely not be returned on the same day you left the message. However, if you need a quick response and leave a complete message with the KLS receptionist she can get a message to an attorney and get you a response. Also the KLS receptionist can set a phone appointment with clients if they wish to be called at a certain time.

Much of the trial preparation, returning calls and answering emails occurs before or after business hours.

Email is great for sending documents back and forth between attorneys, clients, and sometimes the court.  It is faster and dependable and less expensive as it saves postage and copy costs for the client.  Its also great for sending a list of questions to your attorney to respond to and allows your attorney to answer at a time that is convenient to him and you can read it at your convenience.

How long should my case take?  Every case is different and there are numerous factors involved regarding the length of the case. Is discovery needed? If so there are state and local rules regarding time frames for sending and answering discovery.  Is the court booked up for months? Is the judge busy or out of town? How accessible or busy is the opposing counsel? Is the settlement offer sent to the other side really a reasonable offer? Is the client being unreasonable by refusing the settlement offer that has been sent by the other side? Is the other side being unreasonable? Other variables will determine how long your case takes. Some of these things are within your control, but most are not.

What about that continuance that your lawyer says he needs? Well, there’s normally a very good reason for those requests. Lawyers want to be prepared for your case. So trust your lawyer when he tells you a continuance is needed. What about when your lawyer doesn’t object to the other lawyer’s request for a continuance? There’s normally a good reason for that too. Lawyers that constantly object to the other side’s request for a continuance often find themselves getting the same treatment when they are the ones that need a continuance. And when that happens it might be your case that needs the continuance and doesn’t get it.

After the case is over, then orders have to be prepared, all counsel and parties have to agree on the wording of the order, and it has to be presented to the Judge for approval and the Court’s signature.  This in itself can take a considerable amount of time.

KLS lawyers cover many Tennessee counties and other states as well.  KLS is a busy firm, but will handle your case efficiently and keep you apprised of what is happening on your matter.

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