Family Law

Family Law News Issue 1, 2020, Volume 42, No. 1

Message from the Chair

Stephen A. Montagna, CFLS

I am a firm believer that you can relate anything back to the Godfather movies. I don’t know how many times I’ve watched the movies throughout the years-too many times to count. Each time I was surprised at how many life lessons and pearls of wisdom seemed to stand out, innocently buried in the plot line and dialogue of each movie. Maybe it was all the time I spent growing up as an adolescent in New Jersey, or my general adoration for all mafia related movies, but I have always found a way to be able to reference the films’ popular culture into my everyday life. So, it brings me unspeakable joy to be able to incorporate my passion for these films, with this second issue of Family Law News. After all, The Godfather is really a movie about family and this being a publication which deals with family law, it only makes sense to be able to draw from the films and find parallels which have some level of germaneness as family law practitioners. Here are just a few examples that you might also find applicable in your daily practice.

"Just When I Think I’m Out…They Pull Me Back In"

Toxic clients: We all have them. They come in many shapes and forms. Maybe it’s the client who, despite your best efforts, repeatedly refuses to follow your advice. Or maybe it’s the one who fails to have a reasonable understanding of your availability, calling or emailing at ridiculous hours, yet fully expecting an immediate response. Perhaps it’s the client who consistently fails to pay their bill. Regardless of the reason, I’m sure we’ve all been in one of these situations where we’ve decided that the funds left in the trust account (assuming there are any), is not worth the aggravation that comes with continuing the representation. You decide to pull the trigger and end the relationship, only to be met with an email or phone call begging for you to reconsider, take them back, and finish the representation. In other words, just when you think you’re out, they pull you back in.

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