All of the information below was taken from The
Bluffer's Guide to Law which costs about £3
and is a very funny, witty and inciteful guide to
law. You can buy the book through this site by clicking
the link above of by clicking on the image on the
right. Try the other books available on Amazon too
by clicking on the rest of the links.
For lawyers and clients alike the following passage
may interest and amuse you:
Clients and their problems come in different shapes
and sizes. Some clients can be unsporting and bring
in cases which overlap more than one area of law;
this can be confusing but the difficulty will often
be overcome by the word 'focussing'. In giving advice,
focus on the main problem which will be the only
one you can remember anything about. By constantly
talking of this focus you may distract them from
other areas in which you are less certain.
It is helpful to know that private (as opposed
to business) clients tend to fall into well defined
anthropological or sociological categories some
of which are summarised as follows:
Believes the lawyer's purpose in life is
to overcharge for inadequate advice. Checks watch
on arrival and departure. Constantly tries to catch
the lawyer out. Insists on every sub-clause being
explained in enormous detail and then queries any
time charged for this process. Challenges any advice
given by quoting contrary view of anonymous legally
qualified friend. Scrutinises bill with fanaticism.
Incapable of being satisfied. Advice: avoid if possible.
Smiles vacantly at whatever advice is given. Expects
the lawyer to decide everything. Incapable of decisive
thought. Has the listening power of a dead parrot.
Responds to all questions "I'll leave it all to
you to decide, after all you know best". Tends to
forget all advice given once things go wrong. Advice:
watch your back at all times.
Weeps at first interview. Permanently downtrodden
by vagaries of life. Occasionally lightens gloom
with brave, watery smile. Needs permanent injection
of backbone but resists all lawyer's efforts to
strengthen resolve. Advice: buy more tissues.
Spends life bullying others and is not going to
stop now. Demands action, rejects unpalatable advice.
"Now you look here, I'm paying you to do this..."
Needs to be shouted down, may respect lawyer for
it, but more likely to offer violence and move elsewhere.
Usually married to 'emotional' wife. Advice: for
lawyers who like a challenge.
Believes letters are for cowards. Has motto: "If
it moves, sue it." Once won a case (more by luck
than merit) and believes the world is now his/her
legal oyster. Has had sixteen previous firms of
lawyers and is suing all of them. Flatters your
ego to persuade you to take latest case and then
reveals true colours. Advice: check indemnity insurance
Seeks to draw lawyer into web of intrigue. Cannot
understand concepts of integrity or duty to court.
Tells lawyer everything he intends to conceal from
the court and is astounded at any reluctance to
become co-plotter. Subscribes to conspiracy theory
of life, and believes the bench is as bent as he
is. Advice: send down the road to your least favourite
Develops crush on lawyer. Displays similar tendencies
with doctor and vicar. Writes on scented notepaper,
sends presents and suggests home consultations.
Requires sole attention of object of desire. Rings
frequently. Seeks help with completing forms, calling
the plumber and changing the fuse. Advice: keep
at arm's length (or seek a large legacy).
Arrives shortly after an unfortunate aroma. Carries
worldly possessions in a plastic bag. Ricochets
from lawyer to doctor to social services to citizens
advice bureau. Prone to abandoning empty wine bottles
in the reception area. Bounced as often as a Wimbledon
tennis ball. Advice: send largest trainee solicitor
to reception office to sort out.
Requires lawyer to absorb entire life history
before giving the simplest advice. Resists all attempts
to short circuit recitation of irrelevant facts.
Obsessive as to detail. Encyclopędic knowledge of
facts of the case. Corrects lawyer's minutest error.
Client's tedium is matched only by indignation at
the delivery of bill based on time spent. Advice:
delegate to eager trainee to take statement.
Responds promptly to all communications. Listens
to advice and does what is told. Anticipates requests
for information by producing precise typewritten
lists. Understands explanations. Displays appreciation
for efforts. Pays bill promptly and sends whisky
or flowers to emphasize thanks. Advice: treasure,
another may not pass your way again.
Available from Amazon by clicking the following
link - The
Bluffer's Guide to Law
Clients who didn't find that very amusing may
take comfort in the lawyer jokes on the legal
humour page of Expert Law.