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Negotiating ideas

What I usually say when a client asks, “What would you do if you were in my shoes?”

At some point during my representation of a client when I outline their options, the client will ask, “What would you do if you were in my shoes?”  I respect how hard the decision making process is during a tumultuous time in the client’s work history.  The client may be struggling with how to respond to a severance offer, or negotiate a new job offer, or manage a difficult supervisor, or whether to file a lawsuit, or figure out how to handle a noncompetition agreement as he or she explores new job opportunities.

My philosophy is to politely explain that I do not feel comfortable answering this question because I can never truly walk in the client’s shoes. I can never fully comprehend the financial, family, emotional and spiritual issues the the client has to weigh.  Instead, I believe I better serve my client by pointing out out the pros and cons, risks and rewards of certain options, and the facts and law behind each option. Ultimately, it is the client’s decision, and I will support the client’s choice.

Pamela A. Smith
Law Office of Pamela A. Smith
233 Needham Street, Suite 540
Newton, MA 02464


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