Well, here is the big piece I’ve been promising. It’s of a personal nature, but I decided it makes for good reading if you are a lawyer.
My wife’s younger sister needs a divorce. She married a guy that no one liked, had a kid, bought him a truck, quit her job, bought a house, and got a new job (all within a year of the marriage and in that order). The guy refused to contribute to the family. He wouldn’t keep a job. He bounced checks. He wouldn’t come home. She told him to help out or get out. He got out.
I don’t handle divorce and she can’t afford a lawyer. So, I volunteer — not for her sake, but for the sake of my in-laws, good people who just can’t say no to a child.
Luckily, we have a great divorce lawyer in our office and Georgia has a great treatise on divorce. I’m studying hard and asking questions. It should be cut and dry.
But, here’s the rub. There’s always a rub. My in-laws expect that we will all share in the subjects and discussions. But, my sister-in-law has some things that should be kept confidential. She’s my client. But, I hate to keep secrets from my wife and in-law.
That happened once. It was extremely uncomfortable. But, then my sister-in-law spilled the beans anyway.
So, here’s the rule. Never ever represent a family member.
That was my rule before this. I violated it. Now I’m paying the price.
But, I’d do it again if it would give my in-laws piece of mind. I can take the ulcer. They can’t take the stroke.