“I need an aggressive divorce attorney!”
You wouldn’t believe how many people call up our office looking for an “aggressive divorce attorney”. They read reviews that happy clients have written about us online and they are sure that we, at Modern Law, are a bunch of “aggressive divorce attorneys”. I mean, if you just look at my biography it talks about how much I hate bullies and love standing up for the underdog. She must be aggressive, right?
Wrong. I would never describe any of our attorneys as aggressive. Aggressive attorneys cost their clients too much money. They increase conflict and decrease the possibility of settling cases. Aggressive divorce attorneys are not working for the best interests of clients. Why?
Take a look at the descriptions of what it means to be aggressive:
characterized by or tending toward unprovoked offensives, attacks, invasions, or the like; militantly forward or menacing:
The other popular analogy that clients like to use is “pit-bull”. I really need a pit-bull attorney. One former client said “I wouldn’t describe Billie like a pit bull. She’s more like a Chihuahua that never gives up and just keeps going in with repeated jabs.” Ouch. Ok. It’s true, we are passionate advocates and we are emotionally invested in our clients. We take our job seriously and your case personally. But we try to never behave aggressively.
In family court, unprovoked offensives, attacks, or invasions are not best for families and JUDGES HATE AGGRESSIVE ATTORNEYS. This type of behavior is the fastest way to get hit with sanctions and end up paying the other side’s attorney’s fees. Like-ability matters. You want the judge to like you and your lawyer. Judges are unimpressed by overly aggressive, offensive or unreasonable actions. They favor reasonable, rational, and appropriate behavior.
If you don’t want an aggressive lawyer, what do you want? Well, our clients want proactive, responsive, creative attorneys who solve problems. That means we listen to you and find out what really matters to you. Then, whenever possible, we listen to the other side and try to figure out what really matters to them. Then we try and find creative solutions that accomplish your goals in the most collaborative way possible. When this isn’t possible, we go to court and we demonstrate to the judge that we are prepared, informed, organized, and reasonable. We help present your story in the most favorable light. We don’t want to appear to the judge that we are “aggressive.”
We tell our clients we are ASSERTIVE, EFFECTIVE and CREATIVE.