Wednesday, November 26, 2008

A Criminal Defense Lawyer's Thanksgiving

I've done this post before. I didn't check the old one, but I will after I write this to see if I'm still thankful for the same things as a criminal defense lawyer.

I am thankful for:

1. Judges who say "don't worry sir, we'll pass your case until your lawyer gets here, I have plenty of other cases to handle."

2. Clients who don't spend the entire case telling me what their "friend who's a lawyer in New York" said we should do.

3. Courtroom staff who believe they have something else to do but tell lawyers to shut up all day.

4. Courtroom staff who don't get annoyed just at the notion that I have something to ask them.

5. Courtroom staff who don't spend all day letting everyone know they hate their job, their judge, their lives, everything.

6. Lawyers who have "been doing this" for longer than me who still enjoy it, or at least don't act like they have the worst job in the world.

7. Lawyers who have been doing this for less time than me who are passionate about, well, everything criminal defense.

8. Friendly cops.

9. The voluntary surrender.

10. Potential clients who don't ask "if I hire you, won't I look guilty?"

11. Clients who get a good result and don't act like they expected that exact result, and would have received it without you or any lawyer.

12. Return phone calls from prosecutors.

13. Probation officers who "don't want to violate" my client.

14. Cops that understand everyone can have a bad night, even if on that bad night, they assaulted a police officer, drove drunk, or did something else "stupid."

15. Fellow criminal lawyers who cover for you, and take care of whatever "pops" up at that "simple" hearing

17. Not working for.....anyone.

18. Judicial Assistants who don't act like getting on calendar is like asking for the parting of the red sea.

19. Judges that understand vacations, school plays, traffic, appearing by phone, and just "sorry, I was........"

20. that I have the greatest job any lawyer could have.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Brian Tannebaum is a criminal defense lawyer in Miami, Florida practicing in state and federal court. Read his free ebook The Truth About Hiring A Criminal Defense Lawyer. To learn more about Brian and his firm, Tannebaum Weiss, please visit