The Shadow Lawyer


Spare me the shadow lawyer.  That’s the friend of my client who works in a big securities firm downtown and has lunch with him every week.  They discuss his divorce that I am handling.

The shadow lawyer has all the answers and nothing I do is right.  He is the Monday morning quarterback who has never set foot in a courthouse.  He goads my client who then insists I take actions that don’t help his case.

This lawyer is not on the field of play.  He does not know divorce law.  He is not trying the case and he is not facing the judge.  Talk is cheap and it is easy to give advice on someone else’s case when they are doing the work and you are having lunch.  I am dealing with the shadow lawyer indirectly through my client.  This is a very poor way to run a lawsuit.

The case is over.  My client has a good result.  He does not appreciate or even know that he has dodged a bullet.  It could have been much worse.  I present my final bill.  The shadow lawyer decides that I have overcharged on an easy case and he could have achieved much more for less.  I wonder to myself, if the shadow lawyer is so good, why didn’t my client hire him instead of me?