This fascinating article is written by J.D. Hull, a lawyer from San Diego. It is called "Professionalism Revisited: What About the Client?
It makes some wonderful points about the client view of what we call in the South the "good ol’ boy system" of law practice. We are seeing increasing problems with adverse counsel who claim they are too busy to take depositions for, say, five or six months – but not to busy to accept representation in a new case. Or adverse counsel who cannot set a case for trial in 2007 – just too busy.
When push comes to shove we have to count on judges to remind lawyers that litigation is about clients, not about lawyers. Judges have to create and enforce deadlines, and judges have to require people to make themselves reasonably available to advance cases toward trial. There is no reason that 90% of cases cannot be tried in one year. There is no reason that the other 10% cannot be tried within 18 months. What it takes to accomplish this goal is for lawyers and judges to remember that the system exists for the benefit of the clients and the public, not for the convenience of the Bench and Bar.