Tag Archives: bad advice

Don’ t Pull Tricks

Lawyers have a bad reputation. Some deservedly so.

But a good rule of thumb is to not pull tricks.

I was representing a client when they called in a panic around noon during the week. The alarm was going off at the house.  I told them to call the police and go check on the house.

The police responded and cleared the home. Upon inspection, my client discovered the back door was kicked in, the phone lines cut and just about everything that could be moved was, including the dishwasher.

The client called me asking if she should report a robbery.  So, dear reader, you are wondering why is this client calling me? Well, just a few days prior the client’s spouse was served with a complaint for divorce and a request for temporary relief. I informed my client that she had in fact not been “robbed,” but that her husband had hired a local attorney. She asked me if that attorney had called or filed something. No. I could tell by her spouse’s actions who he had hired.

It was discouraging and disheartening, but alas, apparently not illegal.  However, we had a temporary hearing soon thereafter and everything taken that should not have been had to be returned and the damages caused and expenses related to his conduct were reimbursed. It gave no tactical advantage and made the other client and opposing lawyer look like jerks in front of the judge.

Similarly, clients have the option of pulling tricks. Misrepresenting the facts, creating circumstances that make the other party look bad and knowing the other’s dirt may allow for a temporary advantage that could backfire. Also, if you know it’s bad advice, you don’t have to take it.

Matthew Thompson is a Family Law attorney and strives to give good advice and not pull dirty tricks.

Follow the blog: BowTieLawyer Visit the website: Thompson Law Firm

You may also contact Matthew with your family law case, question or concern at (601) 850-8000 or Matthew@wmtlawfirm.com.


Why Clients Hate Lawyers.

It can be a love-hate relationship.


Nobody likes a lawyer until you need one. Then you love them, until you don’t. –Matthew Thompson

Clients hate lawyers for many reasons, but most commonly it is due to the following;

  • Poor Communication.  Communication between lawyers and clients is the #1 complaint.  Both, lawyers and clients, are busy.  Sometimes its hard to communicate effectively and in a timely manner.  This goes both ways and each needs to try to be responsive.
  • Poor Advice.  Just because they are a lawyer does not mean they know everything.  Sometimes lawyers get it wrong.
  • Don’t Do What They Say They Will.  Procrastination or not capable of doing what needs to be done, when it needs to be done.
  • Charging for Everything.  Every call, text, email and message, office appointment, and even when they are just thinking about your case.
  • Misleading About the Total Charges.  This is why I hate billable hours. It’s almost always more than “you” think.
  • Hard Advice.  This is different than poor advice.  Hard advice is telling you what yo don’t want to hear, but need to hear.  Sometimes lawyers are the messenger that gets shot (figuratively speaking, I hope).

Up next? Why Lawyers Hate Clients! Stay tuned.

Matthew Thompson is a Family Law Attorney in Mississippi and tries not to do things to be hated, at least by his own clients…

Follow the blog: BowTieLawyer Visit the website: Thompson Law Firm

You may also contact Matthew with your family law case, question or concern at (601) 850-8000 or Matthew@bowtielawyer.ms.

black bow

5 More What NOT To-Dos in Family Law

I have blogged on FaceBook Don’ts several times.  5 Family Law FaceBook Don’ts & 5 More FaceBook Don’ts.  This one is a little more general, but are still things NOT to do in Family Law matters.

  • Don’t Follow Bad Advice Blindly.  If your attorney advises you to break into the house and take everything, including the dishwasher and the stove, think twice. Who does that? Who gives that advice? How could a Judge ever think that was a good thing? Click here for more. Bad Advice = Bad Lawyer.
  • Don’t Make it a WAR if you Don’t Have to. It only makes the lawyers more money.  You get less. Go to WAR only when it is absolutely necessary. Life and safety.
  • Don’t Solely Blame the Other Side. This piece is sometimes tough to swallow. That SOB you married may be mostly at fault, and sometimes completely at fault, but it’s rare that it is one side’s fault 100%. Acknowledging your culpability, at least to yourself, will help you process what you are going through.
  • Don’t Bad Mouth the Other Parent. It may be true. He may deserve it. You may tell the Judge, your counselor and your lawyer. No one else needs to know.
  • Don’t Forward the Children Communications Between you and the Other Parent. This is so inappropriate. Placing the children in the middle of a parental dispute is a classic symptom of parental alienation. If you are doing this you better watch out. You may not be able to stop the advice given in number 2, above.

Matthew Thompson is a Family Law attorney and tries to give good advice.  It may still not be easy to follow, but it is designed to create less havoc, not more, usually.

Follow the blog: BowTieLawyer 


Bad Advice = Bad Lawyer?

As a practicing attorney you are always learning from each case, each client, each Court appearance, and dealings with opposing counsel.  Through all of this, there are memorable lessons learned and some you wish you had not.


Some memorable milestones are your first Court appearance, your first argument before the Court and the first satisfied client.  I recently experienced a “milestone” that I wanted to share.

I was involved in a case where I “knew” who the other attorney was before he was “hired.”  I knew based solely on the conduct of his client; destroying property, taking things that did not belong to him, damaging other property, having a poor attitude and ignoring attempts to communicate amicably and to resolve the outstanding issues without things escalating.  I have this theory that clients tend to seek out and hire attorneys that are similar to themselves.  Now, obviously this is not always true and too broad a generalization to make, but fitting for this instance.  In any event, this other party decided to do some bad things.

As soon as I heard of the destruction, I said “I know who his attorney is.”  It was not a good feeling. I was not proud of myself. I was disappointed that due to this conduct that I “knew” who he hired.  This conduct and this advice is exactly why people hate attorneys and think we are lower than low.

So what did I do about it? Well, I tried to do the best I could.  Set it for hearing and let the Judge have a say.  The client may or may not have broken the law, but that didn’t make it right.

This milestone, unfortunately memorable, of knowing who the other attorney is by offensive conduct of his client actually reminded me that I do not ever want another attorney to “know” that I am involved in a case based upon offensive conduct of my client.  Want to share to some war stories? Leave a comment or send an email, maybe I’ll blog about it.

Matthew Thompson is a Family Law attorney and strives to do what is right and is now getting off of his soapbox.

Follow the blog: BowTieLawyer Visit the website: Thompson Law Firm

You may also contact Matthew with your family law case, question or concern at (601) 850-8000 or Matthew@wmtlawfirm.com.