by Steven R. Pogue
Attorney at Law

1. Never, ever lie to your lawyer. Lying to your lawyer about your case is like lying to your doctor about where it hurts. Not only can he not help you, but he might cut off something you wanted to keep. The moral aspects of lying are between each individual and his God or his conscience, or lack thereof. But lying to one's lawyer is just plain foolish.

2. If you want revenge, we cannot help you. We do not do revenge. In some instances, we can help bring about justice, though even that is spotty in a system run by human beings. In all legal matters, the best that can generally occur is that it gets resolved at the least possible cost with the least possible pain. If justice can be accomplished in that, it is a bonus.

3. Things take time. You tell us what you want or need to accomplish. Together we work out what needs to be done to achieve that end. We do it. We may also communicate with the other attorney, who then ponders what we have done and tries to make contact with his or her client. That side thinks it over and they talk about it and get back to us. We analyze their response and get back to you. Letters are written, messages left, days end. While there are significant variations on this theme, you see the point. Sometimes, things take time.

4. Give us as much detail as possible. If we ask questions about some aspect of your case, or we receive requests for information from the other side, or if there is a form that you need to fill out, fill in all the holes as well as possible. If we have to come back later and ask you for some other details that you had at the time, it wastes time and money. Worse, we may be left to proceed without being aware of some important fact and have it blow up in our faces.

5. Immediate relief is almost always impossible. Just about the only exception is in actual emergencies (think "life and death"). Even then, immediate results are difficult to obtain. Sometimes a call to an opponent on an immediate basis is possible, but rarely is it possible to get anything through the court system, even emergencies, in less than two or three days.

6. To the extent that you are caught up in anger or other emotions, it will inhibit your ability to make rational decisions about your case. We understand that, and also understand that it is natural that people often feel angry or emotional about their situations. It is our job to remain calm and unemotional so that we can serve you well. Do not feel let down if your attorney does not get caught up in the emotion of the case. It does not mean that I do not care deeply. I means that I recognize that my ability to make reasoned analysis, and give you wise counsel, depends on a certain detachment.

7. There is never any excuse to be rude, vicious or mean. Sometimes we must be extremely firm, sometimes even harsh, but always with courtesy and respect. Some people are jerks. Their punishment is that they have to live with a jerk 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Courtesy and respect are not signs of weakness, but of a higher level of humanity. We remain on that level.

© Steven R. Pogue
All Rights Reserved

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Pogue Calvert, LLP
373 Meridian Avenue, Suite B
San Jose, CA 95126

Located in San Jose, California, the Law Offices of Pogue Calvert, LLP represent clients in the communities of Alameda, Belmont, Burlingame,
Campbell, Cupertino, Dublin, Fremont, Gilroy, Hayward, Livermore, Los Altos, Los Gatos, Menlo Park, Milpitas, Morgan Hill, Mountain View, Pacifica,
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as well as Alameda, San Francisco, San Mateo and Santa Clara Counties.

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