Friendship between lawyers should work to the client’s advantage.
In my divorce case I receive copies of letters between my lawyer and opposing counsel. They address each other by first names. Should I be concerned because they appear to be friends?
No. The fact that lawyers address each other by first names does not indicate they are buddies. American society is egalitarian, that is, we consider ourselves equal to others and therefore 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 many lawyers will use 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, like it or not, part of the Chicago metropolitan community. We are one of the counties known as a “collar” county to Cook County, that is, a county adjoining/contiguous to Cook County. We are the smallest of the collar counties.
There is a relatively small cadre of divorce lawyers in any community, including McHenry County. These lawyers will be in divorce court several times a week and will see each other and, because they have cases opposed to each other, will know each other.
Of course they will usually deal with each other on a first name basis. Anything else would be stilted and unrealistic. The same holds true for Cook County, which has the largest divorce court. In Cook County there is still a cadre of divorce lawyers who deal with each other on a regular basis.
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.