TGIF guys! Today we conclude the Legal Metamorphosis. Hope you find this sizzling for your Friday!


Photo credits

Photo credits

Divorce Morality
Your morality should be the ethics of the profession and nothing more. Become a professional and don’t let your religious consideration overshadow your professional obligations. I mean, how can you practice criminal law and say you won’t defend certain categories of people because of your faith?

You were trained to be a lawyer and no other obligations are more sacred than those you hold by virtue of your profession. Accept all briefs you can handle competently.

Now I am sounding academic, all I should have said is “don’t reject divorce briefs”. Even Lord Denning started his career from the Matrimonial Causes Division both as Counsel and Judge. Believe me lots of such cases come your way as a new wig! I mean, you believe you will get a $10, 000, 000 brief in your first year of practice? Ok nah! Continue waiting, the novel “the King of Torts” by John Grisham is fiction. That you will realise soon.

Be Odd
I mean positively odd. Regular people come around everyday but the heavens drop the odd ones once in a while and they really make the difference. So are you like me, an odd number who funny enough, the regular people try to force out of their odd worlds?
Well, I don’t flow with the crowd. Gani never flowed with the crowd! The eagle, the king of birds soars, alone and never flocks! So stand alone in your positive oddities and stand out tall.

Break the Rules, Don’t Break the Law
Laws are meant to be obeyed not the rules. “You cannot practice as a lawyer except you are admitted to the bar”, that is the law. “A lawyer without any litigation practice or experience is not a real lawyer”. That is a popular belief or rule, which you can break. There are a thousand things a lawyer can do besides going to court.

Every facet of human existence has a legal aspect and a lawyer is needed in all areas besides dispute resolution. In fact, dispute resolution is the last meal in the course. Imagine entertainment for instance, lots of negotiations take place, then contracts signed and payments made. A lawyer can nick off lots of cash from each transaction stage before a dispute arises.

Don’t Feed on the Carcass
Waiting for disputes to arise before you can grab some cash is like a vulture waiting to feed on the carcass after the lions and the hyenas have had their fill. Go for the kill or eat from the fresh kill. Don’t be a dispute resolution specialist only because believe me, people don’t like paying lawyers when it comes to resolving disputes. They would gladly pay if you do other things even less strenuous than resolve disputes.

Why you may ask? Disputes are burdens no one prays or plans for. Nobody plans to divorce his/her spouse, or fight over a property with a 3rd party.

So instead of looking for complex property litigation briefs, look out for juicy property alienation or management contracts. I mean anyone buying or selling/leasing a property will gladly pay a lawyer more for little work compared to a party to a dispute who pays grudgingly.

Create a brand
You can brand as a lawyer. Adverts are not allowed but you can stand out. Some lawyers are known more and heard about more than the others. Blogging and writing have literally made me known than many of my mates. That is a plus for my practice.
What could make you known could be law or non-law related. It could be your faith, causes you fight for or even introducing novel trends in practice. The radicals and activists would have an edge here with the media blitz and razzmatazz.
So like I always say, create your unique brand, stand out and be a blast.

Creativity Rules
“Law is a tool for social engineering” according to Dean Roscoe Pound. So you have to be inventive and creative as a lawyer. Unfortunately the type of legal training we get stifles our imagination and creativity.

What if I tell you that the idea of giving legal personality albeit in an artificial sense to companies was the creation of lawyers. The reason for creating such reality from fiction was to allow the pooling together of capital for large businesses. Through that idea, companies have existed for more than a century and even transmuted to multinational corporations.

So what fiction can you make reality for human existence to continue to thrive? Put on your thinking cap, diagnose the needs of the society as a social doctor and engineer a change in the society.

Legal metamorphosis is an unending process. So at every stage of your life as a legal practitioner, don’t just exist but survive. Don’t just survive, thrive. Continue to explore the limitless possibilities and the unending sea of opportunities the practice of law has got to offer.

The name of the game is “changing (growing) with the times”. METAMORPHOSIS! Have a great weekend.

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Maduka Onwukeme is an Attorney, Creative Writer and Business Consultant. Follow him on Twitter, on Facebook or on Linkedin