I was fired today. So were the other lawyers working on an estate. I believe the perception is we were making the simple will complex. Mind you, this was day two of the estate for this lawman, and just a few weeks after the probate was opened.
The problem originates with how we count money; yours, mine or ours? In lawyers terms; your separate property, my separate property or community property. Depending on what chair you sit in the perception is different.
Now that is an educated comment. Now instead the estate will be divided on the basis of ignorance, force of personality, and power structures in the departed’s family. Might makes right.
Never you mind that. It is the lawyers fault for pointing out the law. Shame on us for charging a fee to help them. From the chair they sit in the perception is all lawyers are just there to use up the estate.
Not so. Most of the estates lawyers I practice with or against are second generation lawyers not really in it for a quick buck. That was the case today.
Recently I was asked how long has it been that a non-lawyer could just go to court and explain his side and have the judge make a ruling without the assistance of counsel. “About a thousand years” I said. Sure you can go, but the number of trip wires that have been laid down in front of you are so numerous you will not recognize yourself or your case on the other side.
Here is how this happened. We The People make a rule, but the rule doesn’t seem right in all circumstances, so We The People start erecting exceptions to the rule and before you know it, it is so criss crossed and cratered you do not really know what it means. If you have any doubt try reading the tax code.
You can blame it on the lawyers if you want. Frankly I was a bit surprised Jimmy Buffett didn’t blame it on us rather than a woman in his famous tune Margaritaville.
Some people claim there’s a lawyer to blame,
But I know, its my own damn fault.