Solo & Small Firm

Letter from the Chair – November 2021

Somita Basu
Chair, Solo and Small Firm Section

It’s officially PSL season! That’s Pumpkin Spice Latte for those of you who are addicted to fancy fall coffee drinks or Practicing Stressed Lawyer for those of you who are too focused on this busy season to worry about complicated caffeinated beverages. One thing is for sure, the holiday season is especially busy for Solo and Small Firm attorneys.

There always seems to be an uptick in our work load just as all the holiday obligations are kicking in. With more people comfortable meeting in person and eager to make up for lost time, I’m sure the turkey and stuffing/dressing overload will be an additional challenge for everyone this year alongside networking meetings, client demands, and vexing opposing counsel. Most of us struggled through the pandemic but managed to survive and adapt to the changing circumstances over the course of the last 18 months. Hopefully for some of you, that included re-evaluating work-life balance, embracing technology, and assimilating to the idea of remote court hearings. This is the new normal and Solo and Small firm attorneys are always at the forefront of changes in the legal profession. We should embrace our first mover position and help others along the way when we can.

At the same time, there are multiple challenges facing Solo and Small Firm attorneys including the new proposal by the State Bar to allow paraprofessionals to provide some services that are currently only provided by attorneys. This new proposal could have cascading effects on the way Solo and Small Firm attorneys practice and market their services. The next issue of The Practitioner will address some of these issues, so be on the lookout for the publication to learn more. If you have thoughts and concerns about this State Bar proposal, please feel free to reach out to me or anyone on our Executive Committee to share your thoughts.

Finally, as practitioners wearing multiple hats, we must always remind ourselves to practice self care. This is a lovely time of year and the weather usually cooperates with our plans for hikes, picnics, or even apple picking (which is apparently a real thing that real people plan to do). Don’t forget to stop and enjoy the fresh air before you open your laptop to work on that pleading. Enjoy the turkey and all the accoutrements before you get right back to being the wonderful responsive attorney and business owner that you all are. Stay safe and healthy.

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