> Would You Hire a Lawyer to Fix Your Car?

Posted on July 21, 2013


From Robert Harvie, Esq., Past President of the Association of Collaborative Lawyers of Alberta:

As lawyers, if our clients expressed a frustration with their motor vehicle during the collaborative process, we would be highly unlikely, to say, “Well, tell you what, let me have a look at it.” What lawyer would suggest to a client that, at the lawyer’s very modest skill level, and at their billable hour rate, the client should entrust the repair of their car to their lawyer?

Which raises an interesting point.

Because many of us (and I’ve been guilty myself) do that exact thing on many of our collaborative files. We find ourselves running into a problem with financial planning, with child issues – and we try to muddle through it ourselves.

The excuse? Our client can’t afford to hire another expert.

As if the service we provide is free.

If our client’s car broke down outside our office, virtually none of us would suggest that the client pay us to fix their car. Yes – going to a mechanic will cost them something. But it clearly would be the most efficient and prudent use of their money.


Maybe think about that if you feel reluctant to engage in the team approach to Collaborative work. Maybe, when you feel pressure to be all things to your client put your mind to the efficiency of reaching out to other possible team members for assistance. Financial experts, child experts, coaches… there is a place for them in YOUR file, most likely.