Soft Skills

Adaptive Learning For Law Students

Adaptive Learning For Law Students

Adaptive learning is a technique for providing students with more personalized learning to provide efficient, effective, and customized learning paths for each individual student. Adaptive learning works at all levels, including the graduate level, and law students may reap the benefits of this new learning mechanism. Adaptive learning systems utilize a data-driven approach to adjust the path and pace of a student’s studies to deliver personalized learning. Adaptive systems may support changes in the roles of faculty, enable innovative teaching practices, and incorporate a variety of content formats to support students based on their learning needs. Adaptive learning through training in the digital...

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Fixed Legal Fees And Making A Profit

Fixed Legal Fees And Making A Profit

Of course, like any other business that charges some cost for its services, fees are the lifeblood of a law practice. Legal fees depend on several variables: the time necessary to remedy the problem; the lawyer's ability, experience, and reputation; the novelty and difficulty of the case; the results; and associated costs. A lawyer's overhead expenses such as rent, utilities, office equipment, computers, also affect the fee charged. Profit is a lawyer’s income. In the case of a law practice, it is what remains after paying the aforementioned overhead costs of the practice. Research indicates that attorneys may expect to keep...

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Handling And Collecting Legal Fees

Handling And Collecting Legal Fees

Not only must lawyers do the hard work that is necessary to earn their fees, but they must also handle and collect them, which are processes that are both time-consuming and detail-laden. Lawyers must not only be attorneys, but they must also be accountants and bill collectors. Lawyers are subject to special ethical rules when handling client funds, which are funds in which the client still has an ownership interest. The rules require all client funds to be maintained in an interest-bearing trust account while they are in the lawyer’s possession. Safekeeping client funds in a trust account improves client-relations since clients...

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About The Different Types Of Attorney’s Fees

About The Different Types Of Attorney’s Fees

This is a quick summary of the common types of fee arrangements used by lawyers. Any fee must be reasonable, and the client must agree to it and all other provisions of the fee arrangement. Consultation: This is a fixed or hourly fee that clients are charged for their first meeting with an attorney where the needs and goals of the clients are discussed and the attorney ascertains whether he or she can satisfy and achieve them on the client’s behalf. Many attorneys, such as bankruptcy and personal injury attorneys offer free, first-time consultations. Contingency: This fee is based on...

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About Fee Agreements And Costs

About Fee Agreements And Costs

This week's blogs feature topics related to legal fees. In April 2020, the national average cost of attorney’s fees where an hourly rate is charged is $225 per hour. The minimum cost is $100, and the maximum is $1,000. The average range is from $100 to $300. The type of fee arrangement that an attorney utilizes is often based on the type of legal issues that a client presents for resolution. Attorneys must base their fees on a clearly communicated and memorialized fee agreement negotiated at the beginning of their representation with clients. Regardless of whatever a local state bar’s rules...

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Learning The Soft Skills – The Three Phases Of Negotiation

Learning The Soft Skills – The Three Phases Of Negotiation

The Oxford Dictionary provides a good, basic definition of “negotiation,” simply defining it as a “discussion aimed at reaching an agreement.” Another more, specific definition is that negotiation is a “dialogue between two or more people or parties intended to reach a beneficial outcome over one or more issues where a conflict exists concerning at least one of these issues.” Scholars describe the process in different ways. They divide the negotiation process into various stages, including anywhere from three to five phases. The California Desert Trial Academy treats the “art” of negotiation as a soft skill. Soft skills are those skills...

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Reconciling Priorities In The Attorney-Client Relationship

Reconciling Priorities In The Attorney-Client Relationship

The California Desert Trial Academy supplements traditional law school curriculum with both hard and soft skills, as well as the values and historical perspective that equip students to be lawyers on the day that they graduate from the CDTA. We help students develop the interpersonal skills necessary to serve clients. This includes the ability to effectively communicate with clients to fully understand their needs, goals, and expectations. When anyone hires an attorney, he or she has expectations about what the relationship will produce whether money damages, specific performance of a contract, criminal defense, or other remedy or service. Clients also have specific...

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How Long Should An Attorney Retain Client Records?

How Long Should An Attorney Retain Client Records?

Physical space may not be as great an issue in the digital age regarding the storage of client files, but the fact remains that the storage of client files is necessary for some time. But how long? Each state’s Rules of Professional Conduct specifically describe trust account records and for how long they must be kept by an attorney. A state’s ethical rules typically prescribe, as suggested standards, minimum periods for retaining client files that pertain to certain practice areas, with exception of trust account records. Attorneys are free to choose a longer or shorter term of retention of client files....

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Amenities Of The Attorney-Client Relationship, Part Two

Amenities Of The Attorney-Client Relationship, Part Two

Attorneys must remember certain rules of thumb when interacting with people publicly and professionally. They must behave as if anyone is a prospective client while never forgetting former clients. Of course, current clients must be treated no less exceptionally. The following are some useful rules of thumb for any client interaction. Current Clients *When talking to clients, give full attention to the client, especially during telephone conversations. *It is important to understand the client’s dilemma as the client understands it. Perhaps more importantly, it is important to know the client’s expectations. *Over the course of any conversation with a client, intermittently repeat and summarize...

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Amenities Of The Attorney-Client Relationship, Part One

Amenities Of The Attorney-Client Relationship, Part One

The following tips are related to certain amenities that attorneys must offer prospective, current, and former clients. Attorneys must present themselves to the public in a courteous, dignified, professional manner during the workday whether they are in court, in a meeting, or even casually at lunch. Prospective Clients *Always carry enough high-quality professional business cards. Be prepared to deliver a concise yet comprehensive answer to the question: “What kind of law do you practice?” *Be prepared to deliver brief, summaries of the law to the questions asked by prospective clients whether on the phone, at the courthouse, or at a dinner party. These...

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