Maybe I should not do this, but I say to my clients: “You are my boss. I give you advice, you decide if you want to follow it.” The reason that I say that maybe I should not do this is because I have worked with and for several other attorneys. I am not sure I have worked with one that has this philosophy.
If the case ends with a plea, the Judge will undoubtedly ask you “Is this your decision to plea guilty and your decision alone?” Notice he did not ask whether your attorney thought it was a good idea to plead guilty. Or your wife. Or anyone else. The Judge was asking if it is YOUR decision. This is important to me to make sure you are making this decision with all of the necessary information, both good and bad, to make that decision.
This is your case, and I will follow your instructions, and will keep you fully advised at all stages as to the legal proceedings and how they affect your case and its outcome. But pay attention to this sentence! If I think you are going to get lit up for 10 years in the Department of Corrections, I am going to tell you this and then send you a letter reminding you that I told you this. The last thing I want is for a client to turn to me after a trial or plea and say “What just happened?” That is the ultimate failure to me. You need to be able to make an informed decision.
But I am not going to pull any punches… I will give you my honest opinion as to how I feel about your case. I will give you the options and from those options you need to choose the path. If at any time you feel that we are heading down the path in a way which you do not want or do not understand, please contact us immediately. But, if I do not hear from you, there is no way for me to know if you agree or disagree.
So, who is in charge? Well, I see it as a team. I will give you the advice. You make the decision on the direction you want to head. Then I go and execute the plan based on our conversation. I have done this repeatedly for clients and they seem pleased. Please do not take my word for it though! Go look at our reviews on Google, Facebook and AVVO. Clients are happy with us because we fight for them and we keep them informed.
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