Behind every heroic legal action there is a lawyer advising against it
Most lawyers advise their clients against suing others unless there is no other alternative. Clients find this frustrating and it has over the years led to disappointment with the legal profession.
Many clients are no longer ready to be denied, what they rightly suspect is the absolute joy of slapping a writ on their enemy. Of course, litigation is expensive but with increasing wealth, clients have ample resources to engage in court actions even if it means the sale of their home. As for the stress, many see a court experience as excellent material for a book and therefore worthwhile.
Commencing a court action is something that you only do once, unless you have a very understanding spouse. Therefore, it is essential to get it right.
Sadly, many clients come to a lawyer having already chosen a target. They may want to sue passing motorists, retailers or old boyfriends. This is such a waste. Other clients will risk having to move house by suing their neighbours or put a blot on their resume by suing their boss.
If asked, lawyers can direct clients to safer ground on which to conduct litigation such as their social club committee where disputation and outrage is regarded as quite usual be it golf, Rotary, tennis etc. Clients should avoid the more argumentative members and target the treasurer or secretary as these positions attract the more sensible members of the club who are more likely to give up in the face of senseless litigation. Club members seem to enjoy any disaster which befalls their treasurer or the secretary and your decision can prove very popular.
After service of the writ a lot of the fun can go out of litigation and therefore it is important to choose the right target for a quick victory.
Lawyers advise clients to avoid litigation but if you are dealing with unscrupulous people sometimes you have no choice.
(c) Paul Brennan 2010
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