“Everything you’ve been told about building
an injury law practice is wrong”

Articles

Stories From the Heart

john :December 2, 2019 11:34 am: Articles

From an early age, your parents and teachers tell you what we should do.  You listen, often with the best intentions, but let’s face, the words of our parents and peers are quickly forgotten.  It’s simply impossible to retain all of the well-intentioned advice and guidance. But there’s one thing that is much harder to more »

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Why you should NEVER use a release authorization issued by the Department of Health

john :November 21, 2016 3:43 pm: Articles

Here’s a common scenario: the defense lawyers send you release authorizations on standard pre-printed forms issued by the New York State Department of Health (Office of Court Administration Form 960). With the stamp of approval of the Department of Health, there can’t be anything wrong with these release authorizations, right? Not so fast, my friend.

The pre-printed forms “approved” by the Department of Health for the release of medical records and ex parte interviews between defense counsel and the plaintiff’s non-party treating physicians should never be used. The DOH “approved” authorizations provide none of the safeguards against the accidental (or intentional) disclosure of privileged medical information and non-treating physicians may mistakenly think that a private, ex parte meeting with defense counsel is mandatory.

Here are some reasons you should never use the DOH release authorizations

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Protecting Your Clients’ Privacy Rights with Social Media

john :July 22, 2015 4:15 pm: Articles

New York courts have uniformly held that a defendant is not entitled to the blocked content of a plaintiff’s Facebook site by the mere existence of the site itself. The defendants may not obtain discovery of blocked social media postings absent the existence of some articulable basis for believing that the private content is material more »

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The Best Way to Kick-Start Your Lawyer Website in Only 45 Days

john :July 22, 2015 4:14 pm: Articles

Want to kick-start your lawyer website in just six weeks?  Impossible, you say?  If you do only one thing for your website, you should hire a blogger to write valuable content for the blog on your website with a new post every single day.

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How to Convert Website Visitors into Paying Clients

john :July 22, 2015 4:13 pm: Articles

What is the real purpose of a website for your law practice?  No, it has nothing to do with fancy graphics and award-winning logos or the self-glorification of you and your partners.  The only purpose of a website is to get clients and make money.

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How to Pay Case Expenses without Spending a Dime

john :July 22, 2015 4:11 pm: Articles

Would you take a suitcase full of cash, put it under your bed and leave it there for three years?  Probably not, right?  You want to earn interest on your money and that suitcase full of cash won’t earn a penny. Even if you put your money in a money market account, you’ll get at more »

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A Guaranteed Way to Get Rich…on Auto-Pilot

john :July 22, 2015 4:11 pm: Articles

Saving money isn’t easy—you’ve got bills to pay, kids to send to college and make the weekly payroll of your staff.  Sometimes it’s a wonder there’s any money left for you.  You know you’re supposed to be saving money, but you’ve got to pay the bills first.  There’s an answer that is easy and takes more »

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The Rocket Fuel to get Your Case to Trial

john :July 22, 2015 4:11 pm: Articles

Have you ever made a big mistake because you didn’t know that your client did time at Sing-Sing for armed robbery (I have) or you didn’t know about the racy photos on her Facebook profile?  Checklists can make your life a whole lot easier by making big screw-ups less likely.

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Breathing New Life into a Run-of-the Mill Neck Injury Case

john :July 22, 2015 4:10 pm: Articles

Need to breathe life into your run-of-the-mill neck or back injury case?  How about an interactive DVD that allows you to show the herniated disc from multiple angles and allows your medical expert to zoom in to show the injury in as much detail as she wants?  And here’s the cool part, this is not more »

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A Simple Way to Save a Ton of Cash When Requesting Medical Records

john :July 22, 2015 4:10 pm: Articles

A big expense of a new personal injury case is the cost of getting your clients’ medical records. A complete set of medical records for a month-long hospitalization can cost more than $500 and that’s before you’ve decided whether to accept the case.  A simple solution is to request the electronic medical records on a more »

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How to Eliminate the Cost of a Videotape Deposition

john :July 22, 2015 4:09 pm: Articles

Videotape depositions give you powerful ammunition that you can never get from a written transcript—long pauses by the witness before an answer, a witness staring at the ceiling while thinking of an answer or a witness’s grimacing facial expressions and defensive, arms-crossed body language.  Without video of your depositions, you will be missing out on more »

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How to Update ALL of Your Local Online Lawyer Directories with One Simple Step

john :July 22, 2015 4:09 pm: Articles

There are a ton of local registries on the internet, i.e., whitepages.com, local.com, superpages.com etc., that consumers use to find lawyers, but there’s just one you. (Google Places is a powerhouse local registry, but there are close to a hundred good ones and your profile needs to be on all of them),  What can you more »

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4 Simple RULES for Killer Web Content

john :July 22, 2015 4:08 pm: Articles

The average person has an attention span of 8 seconds.  But it gets worse—out of every 8 people who read a headline on your website, only 2 will continue to read—ouch, that’s only 1 out of 4.  That’s right, it’s next to impossible to get a web visitor to take time to read the content more »

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Getting Your Team to Care

john :July 22, 2015 4:07 pm: Articles

Trial lawyers are taught to turn abstract concepts into concrete visual images that a jury can understand.  A “day in the life” video is far more compelling than dry testimony from a treating physician in conveying the day-to-day struggles of a severely disabled person. There’s no debate that the visual images in a video or more »

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The Biggest Mistake Made by Law Firms

john :July 22, 2015 4:07 pm: Articles

For 98% of law firms marketing and business development are the responsibility of one or two lawyers.  Perhaps the senior partners are the rainmakers and the associates and junior partners handle the day-to-day technical aspects of running a law practice, i.e., depositions, court appearance and trials.  BIG mistake!

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CONVERTING PROSPECTS INTO CLIENTS IN 3 EASY STEPS

john :July 22, 2015 4:06 pm: Articles

It’s always a little awkward when you refer an out-of-state client to counsel halfway across the country.  Let’s say you’re contacted by Ms. Jones about a new injury case in Wyoming, and (since you’re not admitted in Wyoming), you call a plaintiffs’ lawyer in Wyoming to refer the case.  The phone conversation with the plaintiffs’ more »

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Why Structured Settlement Annuities Suck!

john :July 22, 2015 4:06 pm: Articles

A structured settlement annuity locks in a fixed rate for the life of the annuity.  At today’s historically low interest rates, annuities may offer a rate of return as low as half of 1%.  That’s pathetically low and to make things worse, you’re stuck with this low rate and there’s nothing you can do about more »

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Link-Building for Maniacs!

john :July 22, 2015 4:05 pm: Articles

Links to your website are critical to the search engines.  The search engines (Google, Yahoo and Bing) have algorithms that judge your website by the number of inbound links, i.e., websites that are linking to a page of your website.  Links build the authority of your website with the search engines and increase web traffic more »

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The Most Important Thing You Should Do for Your Lawyer Website

john :July 22, 2015 4:05 pm: Articles

The #1 goal of a lawyer website (or any website for that matter) is simple: you want to build a herd of raving fans who love what you do and want to hear everything you’ve got to say.  Diehard fans who will share your blog posts, FAQ’s and articles with their friends, “like” your Facebook more »

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The Magic Formula that Guarantees 5-Star Online Reviews

john :July 22, 2015 4:04 pm: Articles

At the end of a case, love is in the air.  Your clients are thrilled with the outcome and they swear allegiance to your law firm for life.  You’re feeling good and you don’t want ruin the moment by asking for a testimonial.  A few months pass and the case is forgotten by your clients more »

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What’s Your Dream?

john :July 22, 2015 4:04 pm: Articles

You happen to run into a former classmate from law school in court and after catching up you ask, “How’s everything going with the firm?”  The answer is almost always the same, “It pays the bills.”  It seems as though many of us are on the same career paths: pay the bills, put the kids more »

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Taking the Guesswork Out of Hiring

john :July 22, 2015 4:02 pm: Articles

You’re always surprised, but you know you shouldn’t be.  The superstar legal secretary that you just hired isn’t quite working out.  As you walk by her desk, you notice that she is pecking at her keyboard with one finger (not quite the typing proficiency you expected).  The bad news trickles in—your new “superstar” can’t type more »

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Burn Your Annual Goals Into The Ground

john :September 8, 2014 6:12 pm: Articles

It’s the day before your summer vacation.  You have work that just has to get done before you leave and you are laser-beamed focused on getting them done.  You refuse to allow any outside interruptions or distractions; you refuse to take unscheduled phone calls, respond to email or check your social media. You work like more »

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Creating A Culture Of “Wow” For Your Clients

john :September 8, 2014 5:56 pm: Articles

CREATING A CULTURE OF “WOW” FOR YOUR CLIENTS (How to Build a Raving Fan Base) For some crazy reason lawyers think their job is to deliver a great result for their client. In the world of personal injury, this means a big settlement or verdict that will pay for your client’s loss of income and more »

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A Conversation That Changed My Life

john :September 5, 2014 2:07 pm: Articles

A CONVERSATION THAT CHANGED MY LIFE Just a couple of weeks into my junior of high school in the fall of 1982, I was sitting at my desk in social studies class waiting for class to begin, when my teacher, Brother Armand, sat down across from me.  With his face just a couple of feet more »

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The Radical Solutions-Based Model For Your Success

john :September 4, 2014 2:57 pm: Articles

THE RADICAL SOLUTIONS-BASED MODEL FOR YOUR SUCCESS (How to Get Your Top Cases to Trial Quickly Using a Solutions-Based Model) So often you focus on the things you don’t do well in a lawsuit.  Like many, you might take too long to serve the bill of particulars and discovery responses or you might not schedule more »

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How a Young Trial Lawyer Grew Up

john :September 4, 2014 2:56 pm: Articles

HOW A YOUNG TRIAL LAWYER GREW UP (The HUGE Competitive Advantage that ALL Plaintiffs’ Lawyers Must Exploit) It was a young lawyer’s first trial…and I was scared to death. Just a couple of years out of law school, my big chance to try my first case was offered by the senior partner at my old more »

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Invasion of the Lawyers

john :September 4, 2014 2:55 pm: Articles

INVASION OF THE LAWYERS (How You Can Win the Battle Against Obscurity) It’s obvious to anyone—your town or city is flooded with lawyers.  From billboards on highways to radio and obnoxious TV advertisements, consumers are bombarded with a media assault by lawyers screaming “Call Me Now” or “I’ll Fight for You”.  The bravado of lawyers more »

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The Best Way to Avoid a Legal Malpractice Claim

john :July 30, 2014 2:51 pm: Articles

It’s an ethical dilemma that every lawyer will face at least once. After a substantial settlement in a construction accident lawsuit, I missed an important deadline for serving a motion concerning a lien.  As a result, my client lost his right to challenge the lien and in all likelihood, would have to pay a lien more »

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Cut Your Law Practice Costs in 10 Simple Steps

john :July 30, 2014 2:50 pm: Articles

Cost-Saving Tip #1:  Consolidate Cell Phone Plans for Your Employees Consolidate cell and iPhone and Droid services of your staff into one plan to achieve some savings.  Group cell plans will be cheaper than a bunch of individual plans.

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A Lawyer’s Story of Hope and Leadership

john :July 30, 2014 2:50 pm: Articles

At first, it seemed like just another day. When I got home from work in the summer of 1997, I mindlessly began talking about my day at work while oblivious to whether my wife was listening.  But something was a little different about my wife and I could just tell from the expression on my more »

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How to Pay Case Expenses without Spending a Dime

john :June 30, 2014 5:13 pm: Articles

Would you take a suitcase full of cash, put it under your bed and leave it there for three years?  Probably not, right?  You want to earn interest on your money and that suitcase full of cash won’t earn a penny. Even if you put your money in a money market account, you’ll get at more »

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A Guaranteed Way to Get Rich…on Auto-Pilot

john :June 30, 2014 5:12 pm: Articles

Saving money isn’t easy—you’ve got bills to pay, kids to send to college and make the weekly payroll of your staff.  Sometimes it’s a wonder there’s any money left for you.  You know you’re supposed to be saving money, but you’ve got to pay the bills first.  There’s an answer that is easy and takes more »

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HOW TO GET RICH

john :June 30, 2014 5:10 pm: Articles

(THE ROADMAP TO FINANCIAL FREEDOM FOR INJURY LAWYERS) It’s so easy to forget you’re running a business. It’s not hard to figure out why.  From the first day of law school it’s drummed into your head that you are in a profession (not a business) and if you can master the fine art of practicing more »

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How to Radically Transform Your Law Practice Into a Culture of Caring

john :June 30, 2014 5:09 pm: Articles

(And a Lesson in Caring From My 14-Year Old Son) As I sat in the stands of the stadium watching the finish of a one-mile race, I just knew something wasn’t right. Almost five minutes had passed since my son, Tim, had finished the one mile race and his twin sister, Lily, was nowhere to more »

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Why Lawyers Hate Meetings

john :June 30, 2014 5:06 pm: Articles

(How to Unlock This Powerful Weapon for Creating Focus, Alignment, and Accountability) It’s no wonder lawyers hate meetings. From the minute you step in to a meeting at your law firm, there is meaningless chit-chat and gossip, some members of your staff (maybe you) show up ten minutes late and by the time everyone’s there, more »

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The Anatomy of a Killer Lawyer Video

john :April 4, 2014 5:46 pm: Articles

(How you can CRASH the YouTube Party and turn your Website into a Client Magnet) It’s impossible to deny: Lawyer videos on the web are crap.  The Internet is crammed pack of just one lawyer talking head after another talking about their big courtroom victories—the bravado of lawyers is shameless.  But consumers don’t care about more »

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How to Differentiate your Law Firm in your Retainer Agreement

john :February 20, 2014 2:52 pm: Articles

The ultimate goal is to differentiate your law practice from every other lawyer. Easier said than done, right?  But here’s one thing you can do now that will instantly make your practice different. In New York, lawyers are ethically permitted to accept complete responsibility for case expenses in the event there is no monetary recovery, more »

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The Best Advice I Ever Got

john :February 20, 2014 2:51 pm: Articles

(3 simple secrets for success I wish I had known a long time ago) At the time, it just seemed like rude thing to say. Here’s the story: I’m fresh out of law school and trying to figure out what to do with the rest of my life.  I’m taking any new client I can more »

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The Hard, Cold Truth about Social Media for Lawyers

john :February 20, 2014 2:49 pm: Articles

(WARNING: You won’t like hearing this) Most lawyers have a token presence on social media. Maybe you have a fan page on Facebook or a profile on Twitter and perhaps you occasionally post on Facebook and Twitter.  But social media hasn’t done squat for you and you’re convinced that all of the talk about social more »

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How to Create Trust with Complete Strangers…in an Untrusting World

john :February 20, 2014 2:48 pm: Articles

(How you can win the BATTLE AGAINST OBSCURITY with a formula for success that is ignored by 99.99% of lawyers) Every lawyer website looks the same. Just about every lawyer website has a long video about the success stories of the partners with story after story about the lawyers’ verdicts and settlements. Of course, every more »

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How to Create Trust with Complete Strangers…in an Untrusting World

john :December 20, 2013 3:08 am: Articles

(How you can win the BATTLE AGAINST OBSCURITY with a formula for success that is ignored by 99.99% of lawyers) Every lawyer website looks the same. Just about every lawyer website has a long video about the success stories of the partners with story after story about the lawyers’ verdicts and settlements. Of course, every more »

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Why you should NEVER use a release authorization issued by the Department of Health

john :December 20, 2013 3:07 am: Articles

Here’s a common scenario: the defense lawyers send you release authorizations on standard pre-printed forms issued by the New York State Department of Health (Office of Court Administration Form 960).  With the stamp of approval of the Department of Health, there can’t be anything wrong with these release authorizations, right?  Not so fast, my friend.

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The Difference between Winners and Losers

john :December 20, 2013 3:06 am: Articles

It happens every year around New Year’s Eve.  This will be the year you change everything. Big, bold New Year’s resolutions are made deep in your mind—maybe you promise to lose 8 pounds, join a fitness club or make more money—your goals are set as a traditional way of starting the New Year. And truth more »

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How to Unleash the Power of the Internet for your Website

john :December 20, 2013 3:05 am: Articles

It’s a meeting that all of us have had.  You’re frustrated with your website and you want answers from your webmaster.  It’s time to hold the webmaster accountable for the almost complete lack of new cases from your website and you’re sick and tired of spending a ton of cash for a website that doesn’t more »

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Why Lawyer Advertising Sucks!!

john :December 20, 2013 3:04 am: Articles

Are you a better lawyer than the guy with the big bad double truck yellow pages advertisement? You know this guy—the one with a big photo of his face plastered all over buses, billboards and yellow page ads (some of these guys are a little scary looking if you ask me).

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Why Mass Marketing Sucks!

john :December 20, 2013 3:04 am: Articles

It’s impossible to ignore. The loud, obnoxious lawyer advertisements are everywhere.  From lawyer billboards to a seemingly endless run of lawyer TV ads, it never seems to end.  The consumer is bombarded by mass marketing by lawyers every day and virtually every hour of the day they ignore another pointless lawyer advertisement.

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The Straight Truth about Medical Malpractice

john :December 20, 2013 3:03 am: Articles

Big business, insurance companies, physicians and hospitals spend millions to convince you that lawyers and their frivolous lawsuits have to be stopped. The answer, according to this conglomerate of business and insurance companies, will be to stop lawyers by creating new laws that limit the rights of injury victims.  A cap on non-economic damages in more »

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A Lesson in Life from a Shyster Lawyer

john :December 19, 2013 9:28 pm: Articles

This was a lawyer’s worst nightmare. One screw-up after the next ranging from missed court conferences, failing to file discovery responses in compliance with court-ordered deadlines and even worse, having the case dismissed for failing to file a note of issue after being served with a 90-day demand.  This New York City plaintiffs’ law firm more »

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How to spot a diamond in the rough

john :December 19, 2013 9:27 pm: Articles

(and make money on medical malpractice cases) Here’s the scenario: A client calls you with news that his wife was misdiagnosed by a physician and he wants to bring a medical malpractice lawsuit. Your mind races with thoughts. The first question is whether you simply tell your client to call a medical malpractice lawyer or more »

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The World’s Biggest Hoax on Lawyers

john :December 19, 2013 9:27 pm: Articles

Your first big verdict finally comes in!  You’re on the road to fame and fortune as a trial lawyer…or so you thought.   As the great result fades away, you expect a flood of new clients and referrals.  But something funny happens.  The phone doesn’t ring and you’re left wondering what happened.  You thought that more »

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The Three Biggest Myths about Medical Malpractice

john :December 19, 2013 9:26 pm: Articles

(And three SURPRISING FACTS that no other malpractice lawyer will tell you) Medical malpractice gets a bad rap. Yeah, I know, the limits on legal fees under New York’s “sliding scale” stink and yes, pre-lawsuit settlements are rare.  But let’s cut through the myths about medical malpractice law and explore the reasons that perhaps you more »

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How to Hire your next Superstar Employee

john :December 19, 2013 9:16 pm: Articles

It’s so tempting to take the easy way out.  When it comes to hiring a new employee, it’s just so easy to take the first candidate that has a nice smile, appears motivated and seems somewhat bright.  Hey, you’ve got a ton of work to do, and the hiring process is getting in the way more »

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The HUGE MISTAKE that all Lawyers make (and what you can do to avoid it)

john :December 19, 2013 9:15 pm: Articles

You know you should expect it, but every time it happens, you’re just as surprised. When you get a tremendous settlement or verdict in a big case, your client wants to adopt you as a new member of their family. It’s not just a handshake and smiles—it’s hugs and kisses with your client when their more »

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How to get the best settlement for your next case

john :December 19, 2013 9:15 pm: Articles

Picture this scenario: you’ve toiled for years with cases that “just pay the bills”, but you’ve finally got the perfect case.  This ideal case has everything: great liability, massive damages and unlimited insurance coverage. The Life Care Plan projects future medical care that will cost $20 million and loss of earnings adds $3 million to more »

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Three SIMPLE Rules for Ruthlessly Managing your Time

john :December 19, 2013 9:13 pm: Articles

(How you can become instantly more productive by following three simple rules…and still get home in time for dinner with your family) We’ve all had these days.  You get to work with a specific plan in place and soon enough, unexpected time bombs hit your plate. It might be the lawyer friend who just want more »

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From the beginning of the case until its end, EVERYTHING MUST BE MEASURED!

john :December 19, 2013 9:13 pm: Articles

(Your Key Performance Indicators are crucial to determining your success) When a lawsuit ends with a settlement or verdict in favor of your client, the office staff congratulates you and your friends and family are effusive in their praise.  The goodwill around your office lasts for a few days as the buzz about the great more »

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The First (and most important) Step to Creating the Law Practice of your Dreams

john :December 19, 2013 9:12 pm: Articles

Whenever you ask your lawyer friends how they’re doing, you always get the same answer.  The answer is so matter-of-fact that you could answer the question before you’re finished asking: “I am so busy you wouldn’t believe it.”  It seems that lawyers are just like everyone: extremely busy.  You run around doing lawyer stuff that more »

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How to Decide Whether you Should Take the Case

john :December 19, 2013 9:11 pm: Articles

(Make Sure You DO THE MATH Before You Accept your Next Case) Have you ever regretted accepting a case…sometimes just after you sign the retainer agreement? There could be a million reasons—maybe your client is a contract killer for the mob, is a cross-dressing crack addict or spent 15 years in Sing-Sing for defrauding the more »

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How to Squeeze More Time out of your Day (and get a lot more done)

john :December 19, 2013 9:10 pm: Articles

You’ve heard this conversation a million times. You ask a friend how they are doing at work and you get the same answer, “You would not believe how busy I am.” Yada, yada, yada.  Everyone’s busy, right?  Even your best friend’s mother, who sits at home watching soap operas, is “so busy you wouldn’t believe more »

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Why Lawyer Websites SUCK!!!

john :December 19, 2013 9:10 pm: Articles

The big day finally arrives: your new whiz-bang website is finally ready to be launched.  You’ve spent a king’s ransom on your new website and you’re ready for the big payoff.  Your new website’s got everything: fancy flash animation, award-winning logos and stories of your big verdicts and settlements.  Now, you’re ready to conquer the more »

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The Greatest Business Card you will ever have

john :December 19, 2013 9:09 pm: Articles

Just think, when is the last time you held on to a business card that you got from another lawyer?  Sure, maybe you kept the business card in your wallet for a couple of days just ‘cause you felt guilty tossing it out right away.  But 99% of the time, you toss the business cards more »

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