Because Transcripts Can Be Unforgiving

When I was a public defender in Philadelphia, my office mate used to come across me reading transcripts from court hearings I had done and kid me. I thought I was being conscientious, working to make myself a… Read More

Rule 1: Get The Money Upfront

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One of the advantages to being a criminal defense attorney, at least one who defends people accused of street crimes as opposed to white collar offenses, is that you get your money upfront. There is the initial negotiation…. Read More

The “Almost Went To Trial” Blues

Jefferson Memorial

You are wearing one of the good suits you save for trial.  Your trial notebook is at your side. You got up early to exercise, and now you are feeling rested, relaxed, and confident.  You don’t go to… Read More

“No One Told You That Solo Practice Was Going To Be Like This”

U.S. Capitol building

Last year, while taking the first steps to launch my own law firm, I spent a lot of time on the ABA listserv for solo practitioners, Solosez. I followed the excited postings of other people who had just… Read More

David Baugh on Voir Dire

Jefferson and Washington monuments

David P. Baugh was one of the speakers at a Virginia Trial Lawyers Association CLE I attended yesterday.  Baugh is perhaps best known for defending the free speech of a Ku Klux Klan member in a trial that… Read More

Signs You Have Been Working Out Of Your Home Office For Too Long

Courtesy of the solo practitioners at the ABA listserv Solosez, here are the top 15 signs that you have been working out of your home office, by yourself, for too long. You look forward to your dentist appointment…. Read More

Everyone Should Have An Identical Twin

Jefferson and Washington monuments

For over 20 years, Detective Wynn conducted line-ups at the Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility (CFCF) in Philadelphia.  The line-ups were carried out in a little triangular-shaped room just beyond the main reception area. You know the way it looks… Read More

On Becoming A Solo Criminal Defense Attorney Right Out of Law School

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  A couple of days ago I was contacted by a colleague here in town on a criminal case she had just taken on. My colleague set up her own firm right out of law school, and this… Read More

What This Criminal Defense Lawyer Looks For In A Client

  JW, one of my favorite readers/commenters, has proposed a blog topic.  He says he has read a lot about what a client should look for when hiring a criminal defense lawyer. Now that JW himself is in… Read More

On Watching A Client’s Recorded Statement To The Police

I am watching a DVD recording of my client’s statement to the detective.  The camera must have a wide-angle lens because my client and the detective take up only a small portion of the screen.  There is also… Read More