Dealing with difficult clients

From time to time I take on the legal duties, and responsibilities. In spite of detailed and patient interviewing and fact collection, it is easy to become sideways with the expectations of paying clients. They may have expectations that the attorney should act as a personal hired gun to perform at their beck and call and also act in a way that they believe or have become certain sure how a lawyer should conduct their case. When this becomes apparent to me, I bring the client in and discuss these unusual expectations. Even when you are clear at the beginning , your consultation terms may have fallen on deaf ears. I clearly restate my case goals and how I intend to achieve them. If you are not able to comprehend each others communications, you are at a serious impasse. At that point I recommend, they may want to seek new counsel unless, both can resolve their communication interferences and expectations. This most often happens in criminal defense matters. Family members tend to want to insert themselves into the case and constantly steal your time with what ifs that have no factual basis. Rather than fall into me and the law conversations, get an understanding from your client who to share information with. Family members can be a resource in rural counties. I have been most successful when I clearly describe the problem, clearly state what I can do, Remind them I may need to retain subject matter experts and thoroughly investigate the facts and speak to witnesses. I do not leave interviews to investigators. While they are trained professionals, I am not able to gage veracity of a witness from someone else’s interview.