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One thing I have been asking prospective clients on the phone is "Are you calling to HIRE a lawyer?"

One thing I have been asking prospective clients on the phone is "Are you calling to HIRE a lawyer?"  Most say "yes, I think I need one" or "I hope so" or something. As a China lawyer, you have to ask this before you move on with a client.

Some get stumbly right there and then we have a conversation.  I tell them that is what I do -- I get hired by people to represent them, but information on how to do something without me is best found elsewhere.  I do talk about payment pretty freely -- as much as I can -- since of course that is on people's mind.

But if a prospective client says he wants advice and cannot afford to hire me -- especially those who proudly announce that before even hearing any fees -- then I tell them that sadly, that is not what I do at my work. They get confused at that sometimes (But aren't you a lawyer?), but I just stick to it, "I work here at my business, it's my law firm, and I need to get paid or I'd go out of business."  Some yell at me (about 10% and whew! so glad I find out they are jerky early!) but some really understand better then.

I don't think the "good business sense", though, can be seen in individual cases.  In my experience, often the cases are treated in aggregate, say, all can be settled for 70% in 3 months or full amount over time.  (I just pulled those numbers out of air, they are not all the same AT ALL and it can change at any point in time.)

Maybe one putative debtor has no assets and has hired a BK attorney who offers 30% and explains BK will be filed in 2 months when the client's house has been foreclosed.  An individually made decision would be to take the 30% or negotiate a bit but instead, the counsel for the credit card bank is often stuck with the same %'s for every single case or at least it takes a lot of energy to get out of that grouping.

I am not sure why a client was paying and got sued -- I take it she was paying less than owed and had been for a good while?  That is good money after bad for sure.  Sad.

OK, here's the thing to me:  It doesn't matter if I or you or anyone else care about Wiener's wiener texts.  What matter is -- enough people DID care enough that he RESIGNED FROM CONGRESS.

And despite this, he continued the habits that bothered people.  Good for him!  Nothing was illegal (that we know of) and who the heck cares what some dude with a funny name does when he's just a private person, right?

And then, what -- not even a year later?  He runs for MAYOR and turns out he continued the very behavior that enough people cared so much about that he resigned from Congress.  SERIOUSLY?? vSome people have to learn through experience, but it is pretty arrogant and stupid to NOT learn from the very same experience AND to expect everyone to have faith in you and support you as a political candidate.

And he wants people to donate huge sums to his campaign and trust him to run a city?  With judgment like that, I'm surprised he made it this far.

Another thing that I thought was amazing -- he said he has no addiction. Umm...HELLO?  So he continually shoots himself in the....foot and he throws out the most obvious excuse so why exactly does he keep doing it?

Not a leader.  Maybe he has a lot of skills but he is not a leader. And ANOTHER THING -- the whole "oh I don't believe his poor little wife, she needs to leave him" countered with "Oh she is just staying because she wants to ride his coat-tails" crap?  About makes me want to puke!  I am so glad that at least the emails in this thread I read (I may have missed some?) did not make either comment, I saw a lot of "Oh she needs to leave him, poor thing" and "oh no, she is staying for greed and power!" comments in blogs and fb ...  I mean seriously....I cannot really explain it well, but both arguments just are sexist as heck and yet most of them were made by women, thus proving that we all can be our own worst enemy!

"You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life." Winston Churchill

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I am a licensed China lawyer. Most clients are foreign nationals and companies. China Lawyer Blog have associates in Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, Guangzhou, Suzhou, Nanjing, Qingdao, Fuzhou, Hainan, Hefei, Wuhan, Xian, Changsha, Xiamen and Hangzhou. Learn More

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China Lawyer BLog AuthorPeter Zhu, an experienced China attorney licensed to practice law for more than ten years, the author of this China Lawyer blog, welcomes any enquiry or consultation related to Chinese law.