Friendship between lawyers should work to the client’s advantage.
In my divorce case I receive copies of letters and Emails between my lawyer and opposing counsel. They address each other by their first names. Should I be concerned because they appear to be friends?
The fact that lawyers address each other by first names does not indicate they are buddies. American society is egalitarian; we consider ourselves equal to others and we tend to be a first-name society. It is rare that you are introduced to someone as Mr. or Ms. ____________. Some lawyers will only use last names in corresponding with other lawyers. But most lawyers will use their colleagues first names. Use of the first name does not indicate anything other than that the lawyers know each other.
Are lawyers from McHenry County such close friends as will interfere with my McHenry County lawyer representing me aggressively?
No. McHenry County is part of the Chicago metropolitan community. We are a collar county to Cook County: a county adjoining Cook County and along the commuter train line. We are the smallest of the collar counties. Yet in 2019 the collar counties had 3.1 million people and represent nearly a quarter of the Illinois’ population.
Even in Chicago, there is relatively small cadre of seasoned and capable divorce lawyers. These lawyers will be in divorce court several times a week and will see each other. Because they have cases opposed to each other, they will know each other.
How will my lawyer knowing opposing counsel impact on my case?
A positive relationship between lawyers should benefit you. It should benefit you because it should make the negotiations easier. If, however, you are uncomfortable with the relationship between your lawyer and opposing counsel, you should ask your lawyer about the relationship. If the answer is not to your liking, you should discharge your lawyer.
I have the opposite problem! I’m concerned that my husband hired a well-known expensive Chicago lawyer? Does that concern you?
No. What I tell clients is that I would rather that your spouse have the most capable lawyer in Illinois. That way, the lawyer will know the playing field. Usually this will mean that the lawyer will urge his or her client not to take unrealistic settlement positions.