Posts tagged: lawyer

Associate Attorney Job Opening in Fleetwood, PA

The Smith Law Group is welcoming applications for Associate Attorney.  This is an opportunity to join a thriving 11-year-old general practice firm that represents clients in matters covering civil litigation, transactional counseling, and criminal defense.  The firm is located in Fleetwood, Berks County, PA.

The firm’s practice area includes the eastern half of Pennsylvania.  The firm enjoys a good reputation in both federal and state courts.  More information about the firm may be found on its website.

The ideal candidate will have 1 to 5 years of practice experience, but the firm will consider applicants without experience.  Salary and responsibility will be commensurate with experience.

To apply, email your cover letter, resume, and writing sample to the Executive Administrator.

Associate Attorney – Job Opening

A long-established Norristown, PA law firm is seeking an attorney with 5 – 10 years experience in Family Law, Creditor Representation and Commercial Litigation.  Workers Compensation and/or PI experience is helpful.  The applicant must be able to handle own caseload.  Interested applicants should email resume and cover letter to attorneyresumeapplication@gmail.com.

Attorney Position Opening

Well respected, boutique, Upper Bucks County based General Practice law firm is seeking bright and motivated Attorney to join their growing Litigation practice.

This is an excellent opportunity to join a dynamic, growing law firm with a lot of long term employees and a very friendly, professional working environment.  This practice group handles a variety of matters with a focus on general practice and defense litigation.  Previous related litigation experience is required.

The ideal candidate will have 2-4+ years’ litigation experience, strong research and writing skills along with exceptional interpersonal skills.  Must be admitted to practice in PA, NJ highly desired.

The successful candidate will show demonstrated ability and willingness to work as part of a team, manage multiple responsibilities, solve complex problems, and adapt easily to changing priorities.  Strong analytical, research and writing skills, along with exceptional interpersonal skills required.  Must excel at developing good working relationships with professionals, clients and colleagues.

Competitive salary, realistic billable requirement, generous bonus structure, and excellent benefits package offered.

Send CV and cover letter to Karen Chellew, Firm Administrator.

Differentiation Always Counts

Do you fully understand what differentiation means when it comes to your marketing efforts, and ultimately your success?  I just read an amusing anecdotal blog post from the powerhouse legal recruiting firm of Major, Lindsey & Africa.  Entitled “Tales from the Inside: Do You Think I Should Send a Thank-You Note?” It tells the story of how three candidates for a desirable in-house position were differentiated by the simple fact that one of the three took time to send hand-written thank you notes after each interview, and the other two did not.  Guess who got the job?

Take a look at what Wikipedia has to say about differentiation, when used in the context of marketing (emphasis added):

In economics and marketing, product differentiation (or simply differentiation) is the process of distinguishing a product or service from others, to make it more attractive to a particular target market. This involves differentiating it from competitors’ products as well as a firm’s own products. The concept was proposed by Edward Chamberlin in his 1933 Theory of Monopolistic Competition.

The objective of differentiation is to develop a position that potential customers see as unique. . . .

Differentiation primarily affects performance through reducing directness of competition: As the product becomes more different, categorization becomes more difficult and hence draws fewer comparisons with its competition. A successful product differentiation strategy will move your product from competing based primarily on price to competing on non-price factors . . . .

Most people would say that the implication of differentiation is the possibility of charging a price premium; however, this is a gross simplification. If customers value the firm’s offer, they will be less sensitive to aspects of competing offers; price may not be one of these aspects. Differentiation makes customers in a given segment have a lower sensitivity to other features (non-price) of the product.

The anecdotal blog post illustrates how simple it can be to develop differentiation in some cases.  However,  any good law firm management consultant or marketing professional will tell you that development of differentiation for lawyers and law firms may not be so easy.  It depends on so many factors, such as whether you have a niche practice, what unique qualifications exist at  your firm, and so forth.  Sometime a firm must make purposeful changes to develop differentiating factors.

Your takeaway from all of this is that being different (in a good way) from your competitors, will always help you stand out in the crowd, and enable you to compete for work on a basis other than cost.

 

Job Opening – Commercial Litigation Associate

McCormick Law Firm in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, has a job opening for a full-time Associate Attorney with 1-5 years’ experience who is interested in working in a civil law practice, with a focus in commercial litigation. The associate will also have opportunities to work in the following areas of this general practice firm: commercial law and transactions, municipal law, personal injury and malpractice litigation, and labor and employment law. The ideal candidate will be focused and highly motivated, and will have the energy and drive to take on established business as well as to explore new challenges. The firm offers highly competitive salary and benefits for the geographic area.

McCormick Law Firm is one of the oldest and most respected law firms in north central Pennsylvania. They have a regional presence that continues to grow and evolve. In recent years, Williamsport has been named one of the fastest growing cities in the nation, offering a high quality of life, and it is in the heart of the Marcellus Shale region of the Commonwealth. Williamsport is well known for hosting the Little League World Series annually, and it is home to three colleges and a large healthcare system. McCormick Law Firm is looking for an attorney with a career commitment, who plans to reside and practice with the firm for the long-term.

Interested applicants should send a resume, law school transcript and cover letter, including available start date, to Emilie Pearson, Business Manager, or mail to:

McCormick Law Firm
Attn: Emilie Pearson, Business Manager
835 West Fourth Street
Williamsport, PA 17701

Increasing Emotional Intelligence

The concept of emotional intelligence — EQ — hit my radar screen about 25 – 30 years ago while attending a seminar presentation by Dr. Larry Richard, who at the time was a consultant with Altman Weil.  He is now with LawyerBrain, a consulting practice which helps law firms tackle their most important people issues related to leadership, motivation, talent management, and  managing change.

Back then, the concept of emotional intelligence was not on the radar screen of law firms or HR executives.  Explosive 900-lb gorillas ruled the roost, or were tolerated, at a large percentage of firms. Most succeeded in spite of the obvious shortcoming.  In fact, talented attorneys with a high IQ and low EQ were perceived and sometimes sought out as those with the “right stuff” for success.

With my roots firmly planted in financial management, I recognized the fallacy early on.  Turnover at all levels of the firm, defections, and a toxic culture cost the firms I managed dearly in both dollars and work satisfaction.

One particular firm still stands out in my memory despite the passage of decades. The firm was founded by two partners. One was mild in temperament and affable. The other was undoubtedly the holder of the lowest possible EQ score on the planet. He would scream until his face was beet red and white spittle accumulated at the corners of his mouth.  He would scream equally at everyone at the slightest cause of displeasure, or because of the slightest stressor.  He didn’t care where the excoriating took place, and in fact most were public.  It was literally physically uncomfortable to witness him eviscerate his fellow founding partner in the hallway, to the point where the partner’s hands would shake and his head would bow in an attempt to deflect what must have felt like physical blows.

I have since made it my mission to help firms come to the realization that life is too short to allow this behavior to persist if there is an alternative. Admittedly, as some firms the founder is the low-EQ culprit, and the only choice is  endure or leave. But I always point out that when your choice is “my way or the highway,” leaving is an option to be considered.  It’s better than becoming ill from continued stress and abuse day after day.

I also encourage accountability for unacceptable behavior in the same manner that sloppy work, missing deadlines, or inadequate client communications are behaviors which most firms will not tolerate.  However, I find that the majority of firms are still unwilling to deal effectively with low-EQ offenders who are profitable for the firm.  What can your firm do?

Well, if you don’t want to throw out the attorney, at least get him or her some mandatory coaching assistance.  I have been increasingly referring clients to coaches for rainmaking, leadership, organization, and yes, emotional intelligence.  A very smart and talented coach I have become privileged to know is Dena Lefkowitz, founder of Achievement by Design.  Like Dr. Larry Richard, Dena is a “recovered attorney” who works to help those in practice improve their performance, work/life balance, and career satisfaction.

Can coaching make a difference?  I am asked that all the time by skeptical clients.  My answer is that it depends on the coach, and on the lawyer’s willingness and desire to improve.  As Dena states in her article:

. . . professional practices today have less toleration for berating, belittling and bullying behaviors. Unlike our IQ, which remains stable over a lifetime, EQ scores can be measurably improved. Coaches use assessments, such as the EQ-i 2.0, to determine areas of strength and those needing development, which are very useful, especially if there is lack of awareness regarding unwanted behaviors in a partner or employee.

To learn more about emotional intelligence read Dena’s excellent article “How to Harness Emotional Intelligence to Ensure Success” which appeared in the July 30, 2015 issue of The Legal Intelligencer.

 

 

Job Opening for Public Interest Attorney

Schuylkill Women in Crisis

Seeks attorney to represent survivors of domestic violence in civil matters (primarily OTHER than PFAs), e.g., divorce, custody, bankruptcy, housing, employment, etc. At least one-year litigation in family law practice preferred. Expertise /demonstrated interest in affecting positive change in public interest/legal/court system response to violence against women essential. Salary, bonus, and medical. Job description at  http://s-wic.org/jobdescriptions.html.

Send cover letter, CV, salary requirement and writing sample by August 28, 2015, to: SWiC, P.O. Box 96, Pottsville, PA 17901. E.O.E.

Job Opening – Bilingual Associate Attorney

The Law Office of Marcia Binder Ibrahim, LLC, located in Montgomery County, PA, has a job opening for an associate attorney with at least five years of criminal and/or immigration experience. The firm handles criminal and family matters, and has a special focus on all aspects of immigration law as they relate to the above.

Applicants must be a member of the Pennsylvania bar and/or eligible to waive in. Spanish language fluency is required. The firm’s offices are located in Lansdale and Norristown, and both are convenient to SEPTA’s regional rail. A competitive salary and benefits are available. The firm offers a flexible and congenial work environment, with significant opportunities to gain experience in complex immigration matters.

Interested candidates are requested to send a cover letter detailing why you are qualified for this position, along with salary requirements and a resume in PDF format to Marcia Binder Ibrahim.  (Note: the firm will not accept calls regarding this position unless the firm has already made contact first.)

Why You Need a Real Lawyer -4

 

Beware!!  Before you replace a lawyer with an internet-based “legal service” provider, consider that the results can be disastrous. What they do is provide quick forms for legal needs.  They advertise their availability on television.  They provide forms for business formation, wills, divorce, Powers of Attorney, estate plans, and more.  In the story related below, the forms were for franchises.

No doubt you’ve heard or read that Bar Associations in most states have sued most of these providers for something called the Unauthorized Practice of Law.   Unless you are a lawyer or employed in the legal field, you probably felt they were the underdog. You may have rooted for them to win.  And indeed, they are very careful in interpreting the UPL statute in each state to ensure they do not cross the line. They cannot legally provide any advice. They can only provide a form.  So they survive all challenges.  At least so far.

Their advertising portrays them as the hero trying to save the average person’s hard-earned dollars from seemingly greedy lawyers.  And frankly, Ed the entrepreneur is eating it up big time.  Use of these internet-based services is growing.

The problem is that Mike the carpenter doesn’t know when the matter requires greater finesse than these forms can provide.  And when an undesirable outcome finally shows up — often years later — it often can’t be fixed, or costs far more to fix than would have been spent originally to do it right.

Here’s the problem.  There’s no way to know in advance if the solution is inadequate, unless an actual lawyer is involved.  Later, when a lawyer must correct, or attempt to correct, the situation, he or she is bound by confidentiality and cannot reveal to the public the consequences of using such services.  So unfortunately Mike the carpenter shares all the success stories with friends and relatives, and enhances the reputation of these services.  Rarely does Mike the carpenter hear of the horror stories from others.  And those who ultimately must use a real lawyer to fix problems after the fact rarely talk about it.

So I have challenged lawyers to share some of those stories with me, without any client-identifiable information.  I will in turn publish the information.  Share it with friends, relatives and colleagues who are tempted to meet their legal needs “on the cheap” with an online service provider.

All the stories will be posted under the same title “Why You Need a Real Lawyer” so if you don’t want to subscribe, just return to the blog on occasion and look for that title in the Table of Contents.

Story #4:

A client came to me to review  a Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD ) and franchise agreement template he had purchased on the Internet and filled out so he could start selling franchises. Upon review of the proposed document, it was clear that it was fraught with issues, not the least of which was that it was quite misleading and filled with misrepresentations.

 

This was not because the client was trying to mislead or misrepresent anyone in their responses, but because the client did not have anyone to explain to him what information each disclosure was required to contain and what information it should not contain.

 

The FDD is a very regulated, highly complex document that the average person, even most attorneys, would not know how to properly complete. In addition to the potential fraud and misrepresentation claims that could be brought against the client if he used that form, the form, as completed by the client, violated federal and many state’s laws on franchising.

 

Use of that form could have been extremely costly in penalties and fines by federal and state authorities, and would have allowed each franchisee of the client to rescind the franchise agreement for failure to comply with the federal and state laws.

 

The document was a total waste of money by the client and had to be discarded.  We had to prepare a totally new document.  This cost the client money and time he spent on the template, and then the cost and time of drafting the documents from scratch with us.

Why You Need a Real Lawyer -3

Beware!!  Before you replace a lawyer with an internet-based “legal service” provider, consider that the results can be disastrous. What they do is provide quick forms for legal needs.  They advertise their availability on television.  They provide forms for business formation, wills, divorce, Powers of Attorney, estate plans, and more.

No doubt you’ve heard or read that Bar Associations in most states have sued most of these providers for something called the Unauthorized Practice of Law.   Unless you are a lawyer or employed in the legal field, you probably felt they were the underdog. You may have rooted for them to win.  And indeed, they are very careful in interpreting the UPL statute in each state to ensure they do not cross the line. They cannot legally provide any advice. They can only provide a form.  So they survive all challenges.  At least so far.

Their advertising portrays them as the hero trying to save the average person’s hard-earned dollars from seemingly greedy lawyers.  And frankly, Ed the entrepreneur is eating it up big time.  Use of these internet-based services is growing.

The problem is that Ed the entrepreneur doesn’t know when the matter requires greater finesse than these forms can provide.  And when an undesirable outcome finally shows up — often years later — it often can’t be fixed, or costs far more to fix than would have been spent originally to do it right.

Here’s the problem.  There’s no way to know in advance if the solution is inadequate, unless an actual lawyer is involved.  Later, when a lawyer must correct, or attempt to correct, the situation, he or she is bound by confidentiality and cannot reveal to the public the consequences of using such services.  So unfortunately Ed the entrepreneur shares all the success stories with friends and relatives, and enhances the reputation of these services.  Rarely does Ed the entrepreneur hear of the horror stories from others.  And those who ultimately must use a real lawyer to fix problems after the fact rarely talk about it.

So I have challenged lawyers to share some of those stories with me, without any client-identifiable information.  I will in turn publish the information.  Share it with friends, relatives and colleagues who are tempted to meet their legal needs “on the cheap” with an online service provider.

All the stories will be posted under the same title “Why You Need a Real Lawyer” so if you don’t want to subscribe, just return to the blog on occasion and look for that title in the Table of Contents.

Story #3:

Child is taking care of ill parent. Parent wants to change will to give caretaker child a larger share of the estate than the other siblings. (The other parent is already deceased). Caretaker hires “notario publico” to draft new will. This non-lawyer charges almost the same rate that local lawyers would have charged. When the ill parent passes, the caretaker child submits the new will for probate. Siblings challenge the new will, and present the old will. Child caretaker isn’t clear with [real lawyer] handling the will challenge on her behalf, that the new will was prepared by someone not licensed to practice law. [Real lawyer] makes best effort, but can’t overcome the problems with the flawed new will. Siblings win.

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