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My awesome paralegals

HardworkingPeople

When I was fresh out of law school I had visions of providing clients with the highest quality of service regardless of their income. However, reality sunk in when I started my solo practice.

No matter how hard I tried to keep my fees under control, no person of modest means could afford me. Between office tasks and legal work, I was always overworked and underpaid. If I lowered my fees, I wouldn’t earn enough to cover office expenses and pay off my student loans.

Then, I hired Katelyn.

Katelyn had just graduated with a BS in paralegal studies and she wanted to put her knowledge to good use. At the time, I wasn’t aware of how useful paralegals could be so I just gave Katelyn office tasks. Katelyn, not happy with the situation, eventually managed to wring legal work from me.

And then I had an epiphany: Smart paralegals are just as helpful in a law office as a lawyer. Yet, they bill at less than half the hourly rate of an attorney. If we use paralegals, our client’s legal fees can be lowered without sacrificing our quality of service.

Now I work with two brilliant paralegals, Katelyn and Tim. They handle the routine day-to-day legal tasks, pleadings and motions. They do legal research, keep track of deadlines and — on slow days — they even beat me at scrabble.

There are times I wish Katelyn and Tim were full-fledged attorneys. They can’t give legal advice and they can’t attend court hearings. Yet, this is a small price to pay for working with two of the smartest and hardest working people I know.

{ 4 comments… add one }

  • Jona Jackson February 14, 2012, 3:38 am

    Hello Atty. Fahnert :)

    Reading your blog made me smile, it remind me of how of wonderful person you are and an excellent lawyer… I have not visited your website in a while and I’m one of many people you helped in the past… I will always be thankful of all the help you gave me in the past and will never forget you.. Because of your help, I gained my freedom again…I know I was one of those people who doesnt have enough money to pay you for your service during my case, but youre definitely one great person who had put all your effort and your heart to help me with my case regardless of my situation… Thank you so very much!!! I cant find the right words to describe how lucky I am to know you and to have you by my side to get through my miserable life back in the day…. May you gain more success in life! God bless you Atty. Fahnert!

    Jona

    • Marie Fahnert February 16, 2012, 2:07 am

      Jona! It’s so nice to hear from you!

      Thanks for saying nice things about me. However, don’t credit me too much! You played a big role in the positive outcome of your case. You approached your case with maturity and did everything you could to work things out.

      When you have the time, please email me and update me on your life. How’s school? How’s your daughter?

  • Jona Jackson February 16, 2012, 2:42 am

    Atty. Marie!! :) you’re more than welcome!! You know you’ve been a huge help for me and my daughter on those times :) and you know that… Youre one of the most humble person I’ve ever met.. I wish nothing but more success and good health for you Atty. Marie… I will surely send you an email tonight and update you on things about me and my daughter… :)

    Have a wonderful evening !!
    Jona

  • Jason Best December 19, 2012, 2:25 am

    Need a Third? ..lol

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