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Attorneys and Barristers of the Lounge

Ephraim Tutt

One Too Many
Messages
1,531
Location
Sydney Australia
G'day Dave,

I don't care for federalism? Well, the trouble is that those buggers in government make these decisions without even consulting me. Can you believe the hide of those guys?!

For my part, I've been doing what I can to ensure the standards being proposed are not some mad dash to mediocrity but actually represent an ethical standard that lawyers can be proud of. And on that I've been loud and very much involved.

Claiming a specialisation, here at least, doesn't box you into a corner forever. You can change your specialisation or choose not to use it if circumstances change. Sadly for me, there is no accredited specialisation in my area of practice.
 

Selvaggio

One of the Regulars
Messages
136
Location
Sydney
David Conwill said:
Welcome! This brings up an interesting point. The ABA model ethics rules don't really allow for specialization (at least by name). Is such not the case in Australia? I think all the US states follow the ABA rule in this respect.

-Dave


In New South Wales, where I am admitted to pratice, we allow lawyers to publically identify as a specialist if they have submitted to quite a strict regime of examination by a peer panel. It is very like being qualified as a medical specialist.

In reality, many lawyers specialise, and identify as such, without formally seeking accreditation, particularly if they generally represent corporates. This is my situation - in private practice I acted for employers and have practiced as an 'in house' lawyer for the past decade or so.

Lawyers who represent individuals are much more likely to obtain specialist accreditation so they can market themselves as such (so as to distinguish themselves from GPs).
 
Greetings all. I too am a lawyer -- in name at least -- although I haven't found any work yet since passing the bar last year. Pretty soon it might be digging ditches...

As to the question of specialties, here in the US there are two traditional areas of law in which an attorney can claim special skills: admiralty law and patent law. Those are the 'historical' ones; some states may allow others. I can't speak to the qualifications and requirements for admiralty, but patent prosecution requires admission to a separate bar in order to practice before the US Patent Office. Just sitting for the exam requires a degree in engineering or the hard sciences. I'm currently in the process of cramming for it and it's a real doozie. :eusa_doh:
 

Selvaggio

One of the Regulars
Messages
136
Location
Sydney
Actually, Orion, now that you mention it, the situation here is exactly the same when it comes to patent and admiralty law. And they are longstanding specialisations that predate the cureent broader accreditation scheme which include...

* Dispute Resolution
* Employment & Industrial Law
* Immigration Law
* Local Government & Planning Law
* Personal Injury
 

Selvaggio

One of the Regulars
Messages
136
Location
Sydney
Actually, Orion, now that you mention it, the situation here is exactly the same when it comes to patent and admiralty law. And they are longstanding specialisations that predate the cureent broader accreditation scheme which include...

* Dispute Resolution
* Employment & Industrial Law
* Immigration Law
* Local Government & Planning Law
* Personal Injury
 

Ephraim Tutt

One Too Many
Messages
1,531
Location
Sydney Australia
Welcome aboard Orion! Congratulations on your admission. Pull up a chair. The folks around here are a friendly lot - for lawyers! We also have a few paralegals, of course, and one or two who just pop in because they like the company.

What area of law are you hoping to get into?

And Selvaggio - the specialist accreditation areas in Qld are:

Family Law
Personal Injuries Law
Property Law
Succession Law
Mediation Law
Taxation Law
Business Law
Commercial Litigation
Immigration
Criminal Law
Workplace Relations
 
Messages
531
Location
The ruins of the golden era.
David Conwill said:
Technology aside, I would like to hear the Association’s thoughts on how the profession has changed since the Golden Era, and whether it’s for better or worse.

My alma mater likes to refer to the flood of graduates as creating better access to justice. So does my state bar for that matter. But I’m not convinced this is really the best thing for society or lawyers, it just seems like a race to the bottom.

Is this accurate, or am I just becoming cynical from reading the comments to ABA Journal articles?

-Dave

Dave,

I spoke with a judge that has been on the bench for over 50 years and he said the greatest difference between lawyers back then and today was civility. Civility to the bench and to other attorneys. Anyone else care to comment on Dave's question?

Although I recently passed the bar and I am currently look for work in a bleak job market, I agree that too many attorneys cannot be a good thing. It is not a good thing because clients are a finite resource and too many attorneys makes the occupation too cut throat which I don't think the profession was meant to be. Any thoughts, attorneys and barristers?
 

Ephraim Tutt

One Too Many
Messages
1,531
Location
Sydney Australia
Don't forget solicitors Son of Atropos!
And welcome to the Observation Bar Association!

When I teach ethics I promote 4 fundamental principles that sum up every conduct rule - they are Fidelity, Honesty, Propriety and Competency. These are the 4 things thast drive our duties to Court, Client, Colleague and Community. Propriety is broader than civility, but includes it. Propriety was chosen because it fits better with the 'fit and proper' character requirements for admission in this country.

Have standards slipped? Undoubtedly, though I would say moreso over there than here. The standards of lawyer advertising allowed over there would have you drummed out of the profession here. Our standing as officers of the court still carries some weight around here. Nonetheless we still have a ways to go to ensure we take seriously our duties to ensure public confidence in the law is maintained - or regained.
 

Sparafucile

New in Town
Messages
7
Location
NYC suburbs
Ephraim Tutt said:
I've noticed that there's quite a few brothers of the Bar (and maybe some sisters too) hanging about in the Lounge after hours.

So, I've booked us this here room with its own bar to meet with fellow legal beagles from around the world and discuss what we do, and most importantly the lids we wear when pursuing the course of justice.

Pull up a seat, tell us who you are and what area you practice in, any legal tales you wish to tell and, of course, your favourite hats, pens, watches and other vintage gear.

Greetings all!

I'm new here, but not to hats nor the law. I'm in my 60s, born and lived in NYC for many years, and have been practicing law for 30+ years. I moved just across the river to NJ some years ago, and aside from being a sole practitioner for a decade or so, have always practiced in small (5-or-fewer lawyer) firms that have general practices. I practice mostly civil litigation and transactional law in a NJ suburb of NYC.

I wore a beret while in school (it was the 60s) and bought my first fedora when I passed the bar - Borsalinos were $39.95 back then... I'm partial to a C-crown, under 2 1/2 inch brim, in grey, or an occasional black fedora. And I don't buy Borsalionos any more - a bit too pricey for me, especially when there are no more coatrooms in courthouses and many offices, and one's hat often gets sat on or knocked to the floor!

Like many of you I use fountain pens (the Pelikan 600 is my favorite) and own many.

Well, nice chatting with all of you!
 

Ephraim Tutt

One Too Many
Messages
1,531
Location
Sydney Australia
Sparafucile said:
Greetings all!

I'm new here, but not to hats nor the law. I'm in my 60s, born and lived in NYC for many years, and have been practicing law for 30+ years. I moved just across the river to NJ some years ago, and aside from being a sole practitioner for a decade or so, have always practiced in small (5-or-fewer lawyer) firms that have general practices. I practice mostly civil litigation and transactional law in a NJ suburb of NYC.

I wore a beret while in school (it was the 60s) and bought my first fedora when I passed the bar - Borsalinos were $39.95 back then... I'm partial to a C-crown, under 2 1/2 inch brim, in grey, or an occasional black fedora. And I don't buy Borsalionos any more - a bit too pricey for me, especially when there are no more coatrooms in courthouses and many offices, and one's hat often gets sat on or knocked to the floor!

Like many of you I use fountain pens (the Pelikan 600 is my favorite) and own many.

Well, nice chatting with all of you!

G'day Serge! It's fabulous to have you join us in the Observation Bar Association.
Borsalinos were $39.95?! What a golden age!

My namesake, Ephraim Tutt, was a fictional NY lawyer created by real NY lawyer, Arthur Train. I thought the first Tutt books appeared around 1918 but I've just picked up one that was first published in 1914 by Scribners. I'm guessing this is the first published collection so the Tutt stories probably began in the Saturday Evening Post around 1912. They're worth a read - funny, intelligent, light reading that give some insight into the practice of law back in those days in your neck of the woods.

Interestingly, many of the issues around deteriorating professional standards that we regard as a modern phenomenon appear to have been around in Tutt's day too. We've been discussing the changes in the law and the legal culture over the past few decades and would be interested in your insights. And we're always interested in photos of those hats and pens!

Welcome aboard.

Here's to collegiality! Cheers!
 

Sparafucile

New in Town
Messages
7
Location
NYC suburbs
Ephraim Tutt said:
G'day Serge! It's fabulous to have you join us in the Observation Bar Association.
Borsalinos were $39.95?! What a golden age!

My namesake, Ephraim Tutt, was a fictional NY lawyer created by real NY lawyer, Arthur Train. I thought the first Tutt books appeared around 1918 but I've just picked up one that was first published in 1914 by Scribners. I'm guessing this is the first published collection so the Tutt stories probably began in the Saturday Evening Post around 1912. They're worth a read - funny, intelligent, light reading that give some insight into the practice of law back in those days in your neck of the woods.

Interestingly, many of the issues around deteriorating professional standards that we regard as a modern phenomenon appear to have been around in Tutt's day too. We've been discussing the changes in the law and the legal culture over the past few decades and would be interested in your insights. And we're always interested in photos of those hats and pens!

Welcome aboard.

Here's to collegiality! Cheers!

Thank you! To collegiality!

About clothing back then: Not only were Borsalinos $39.95, they were top grade beaver fur. Cavanaugh and Knox were two other "lesser" brands for a few dollars less. And I had an Italian tailor who hand-made my bespoke suits for $550 to $600 each! (These days I don't indulge in such things - off-the-rack is just fine!)

I do concur with the others that civility has lessened between members of the bar and bench - it was worse, then got better. Where I practice it reached a low point in the mid 90s when we were flooded with new lawyers, and they didn't have the "mentoring" experience that we older lawyers had when there were so few of us, and I think that television spent too much time portraying the lawyer as an arrogant, self-centered pit-bull - new lawyers often confused that with advocacy.

And too, dockets weren't as crowded in the 70s and judges and adversaries were more forgiving of a new lawyer's mistakes. It took a massive effort on the part of the Bar association, CLE ethics courses and a peer education program to crack down on the "pit-bull" mentality, and now, argument and exchanges in the course of most litigation (except for divorce) and practice is actually fairly polite. I rarely have an unpleasant exchange these days.

Today the problem seems to be unemployment: there are an astounding number of unemployed lawyers in the NYC area today. Firms get hundreds of resumes for one job.

Nevertheless, I think we are in a fine profession; most of my colleagues are learned, interesting people and I find the work to be rewarding.

Well, it was good chatting with you fellows!
 

Harp

I'll Lock Up
Messages
8,508
Location
Chicago, IL US
Ephraim Tutt said:
Harp,
I always reckoned that rational was over-rated. Set up the Tennessee bourbon and let's have some completely irrational constitutional discourse....


...strictly construed irrational discourse, of course. ;)
 

David Conwill

Call Me a Cab
Messages
2,853
Location
Bennington, VT 05201
I just requested the first (I think) Ephraim Tutt story through Interlibrary Loan: Tutt and Mr. Tutt, from 1919.

I’m excited to read it. I just hope it arrives more quickly than the last ILL request I made. It took three months to arrive and then I wasn’t able to come pick it up before my hold expired!

-Dave
 

Ephraim Tutt

One Too Many
Messages
1,531
Location
Sydney Australia
David Conwill said:
I just requested the first (I think) Ephraim Tutt story through Interlibrary Loan: Tutt and Mr. Tutt, from 1919.

I’m excited to read it. I just hope it arrives more quickly than the last ILL request I made. It took three months to arrive and then I wasn’t able to come pick it up before my hold expired!

-Dave

G'day David,

You'll enjoy the Tutt stories. I've managed to accumulate quite a collection of Arthur Train's Tutt stories and other writings. Interestingly, most are still in print today. My own collection are first editions or close to them as these can often be found quite cheaply on eBay.

Until recently I thought that "Tutt and Mr Tutt" (1920) was the first published collection of these stories that first appeared in the Saturday Evening Post. I recently purchased a much earlier volume called "By Advice of Counsel" which was published in 1914 an comprises a collection of Tutt stories from 1913-14 editions of the Saturday Evening Post. I've just started reading this one.

Just as a bit of background, Tutt and Mr Tutt are partners in the NY firm of Tutt & Tutt. They are not related but Mr Tutt (Ephraim) decided to take on Tutt (Samuel) because he had a name he could trust! The story of how they met is found in "Yankee Lawyer: The Autobiography of Ephraim Tutt". I highly recommend it! Samuel is always referred to as 'Tutt' and Ephraim as 'Mr Tutt'.

Arthur Train created an earlier NY lawyer in his 1911 novel "The Confessions of Artemis Quibble". Quibble is completely amoral - unlike Ephraim Tutt who is a strongly moral character. Tutt is also capable of breaking the rules, so long as the cause is noble enough - an interesting ethical situation.

Here's Arthur Train -

c6d3dc6df5a6869018fadeeaaa623beb.jpg
 

Jeff1970

New in Town
Messages
5
Location
Denver
Greetings,

I'm Jeff, new to the lounge. I'm an older 2L at the University of Denver. I am posting this on a study break as I have 3 finals this week: Evidence, Crim Pro, and Admin Law.

On Saturday, I'm having a nice stiff drink before starting work on my last two finals.

I look forward to speaking to all of you, and seeing what manner of great brief cases and attaches you use.

Wish me luck,
Jeff
 

Ephraim Tutt

One Too Many
Messages
1,531
Location
Sydney Australia
G'day Jeff and welcome to the Lounge - and to the Observation Bar Association.

It's surprising that half a planet away here in Australia students study the same subjects towards their law degree - and in most instances only the cases and legislation names have been changed. The law shares a great deal in common too.

All the very best with your exams. We'll look forward to getting to know you.

As for briefcases, mine is a black kid leather number. I bought it new a few years back and it's been all over the country with me.

One day I'll find a vintage one.
 

David Conwill

Call Me a Cab
Messages
2,853
Location
Bennington, VT 05201
For almost a year now, I’ve carried this Custom Hide U.S. Army 1945 briefcase:

1945briefcase.jpg


I bought it at the recommendation of fellow Loungers and have no regrets thus far. I enjoy the sense of connectedness to some of the great lawyers of the past (Justice Jackson at Nuremberg, perhaps?).

-Dave
 

Harp

I'll Lock Up
Messages
8,508
Location
Chicago, IL US
Ephraim Tutt said:
Hi David,
Australia is in the process of developing a new national set of conduct rules that will apply uniformly across all Australian jurisdictions. At present, each jurisdiction has its own though most are at least influenced by the Law Council of Australia's Model Rules. This is no longer sustainable in a country where lawyers frequently practice across state boundaries.


...how is the job market in Australia for criminal defenders? :)
 

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