Alternative Branding

     Here’s an interesting way to get attention for your law firm: Pretend you’re something else and then find a journalist who can’t tell the difference.
     The Boston Globe last month ran a story about a new “startup” called Daily General Counsel that sends lawyers to your company to hang out for a day and do as much as possible.
     As opposed to the lawyers staying in their own office and just doing what the client needs in a lot less time.
     And when we say “lawyers” we mean the married couple who comprise the entire roster of Daily General Counsel.
     If you’re a client that enjoys watching attorneys hang out at your place and look for work, this company is for you.
     I’m not being critical here. If it works, it’s brilliant marketing.
     How else could you brand your firm? Here are a few ideas:
     Shotgun Rider: Just because your client has criminal tendencies doesn’t mean he or she couldn’t use a friend.
     Friending: Offer attorneys willing to spend a day as a friend with a paying client. And if the client happens to require legal counsel – say, after a financial transaction at a local bank – the attorney can offer timely advice on the spot.
     Lunch Buddies: Provide lawyers who can eat lunch and talk law with clients wherever they want. Firm slogan: “We’re Educational and Nutritious!”
     Litigation Settlers of Catan: Many clients, especially the nerdy ones, need friends. Your lawyers can play games with them and simultaneously teach them valuable negotiating techniques.
     Or how to cheat.
     
     Recommended Reading: For yet another fascinating example showing why we need a judicial system, check out a recent ruling from the Oregon Supreme Court called Rice v. Rabb .
     We need a strong court system so that people can spend four-plus years litigating – with no end in sight (literally) – the ownership of “a white satin shirt, a white leather vest and riding skirt with black and white fringe, and a black scarf.”
     This was the outfit worn by the plaintiff’s mother-in-law when she was the 1930 Queen of the Pendleton Round-Up.
     So it had sentimental value?
     Well, not exactly. It seems, according to the ruling, that the plaintiff didn’t notice it was gone for seven years because she was legally blind. This didn’t prevent her from suing when somebody told her the “Queen Outfit” was missing.
     Why did the defendant make off with this costume?
     We don’t know, because apparently no one made an argument on behalf of the defendant before the state supreme court.
     This brings us to the next oddity here: The Oregon Trial Lawyers Association filed an amicus brief.
     Somebody’s got to weigh in on the state’s critical legal issues.
     The precedent set here, in case you’re wondering, is that blindness tolls the Statute of Limitations.
     Justice isn’t blind – because if it was, no one would notice any crimes.
     But justice does care about blind people.
     This blind plaintiff now gets to go back to a trial court to continue her long crusade to get back something she can’t see and doesn’t wear.
     Expect to see this in an upcoming episode of “Portlandia.”
     Do you think the plaintiff’s lawyer is getting a contingency fee?

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