Advantage Denton

October 23, 2009

Destiny, Secret Agent Cow of Action

Filed under: Melissa Denton Posts — Melissa Denton @ 6:05 pm

Destiny the CowDestiny, on a dull, dark and dreary day, is performing her magical act of pretending to be an everyday cow.  Look at how she simply says “moo” and chews cud with the best of them.  An innocent onlooker (unlike you and me) will simply think Destiny is a rather cute, but boring, cow.

Due to our closer scrutiny, we have our breath taken away by Destiny’s daring as she springs forth to once again save the day.  The oil rig explosion has distracted everyone in the area and only we are aware that Destiny has made a sprightly dash into her cape and sparkle blue tights as she bounds into action.

The picture is ugly indeed as Destiny arrives.  Basile Blogbust is muttering very nasty words as he menacingly strides toward Cherrie Chenoweth, wielding the biggest wrench known to man.  Not only is Basile dangerous, but the explosion has turned into a roaring fire.  It looks like Cherrie’s goose is cooked.

Sparing not one thought for her own safety, Destiny boulders politely into Basile with many apologies for her “clumsiness”.  Basile, so astonished to hear English spoken by a polite cow in blue tights, drops the wrench right into the inferno, squelching the fire by miraculous means.  Cherrie’s relief is palpable and extreme, since the explosion she caused in Basile Blogbust’s oil well is no longer afire.

Not content with merely saving lives and preventing prison sentences for murder, Destiny delivers her truly amazing performance of the day by finding six lawyers, all at once.  Basile is grateful to start up his lawsuits against his psychotherapist who had told him many times that he was crazy for imagining cows.  He is also very enthusiastic about suing the wrench manufacturer about the melted wrench blob that now clogs up his oil well.  Cherrie is not left behind in the lawsuit Olympics, oh no.  She needs (and gets) four lawyers to help her sue Basile for breach of promise to marry her and give her black gold in beaucoup buckets.  Everyone is happy, thanks to Destiny.

October 14, 2009

Black Robe Disease

Filed under: Uncategorized — Melissa Denton @ 6:45 pm

Melissa Denton“Judge not lest ye be judged” is one of my favorite quotes from the Judeo-Christian Bible.  At first it sounds like this is a silly thing to say to someone who has a job being a judge in a courtroom.  When you stop and think about it, though, this saying has profound meaning for judicial officers.

In my very humble opinion (as a sometimes judicial officer myself) it is extremely important for people acting as judges to keep at the front of their minds the fact that “There, but for the grace of God, go I.”

When I act as a lawyer, I am able to delve into the facts of a client’s life in detail (time and budget permitting).  I know that I am only skimming the surface of what is really going on.  The judicial officer only hears a sliver of each side of any case before being required to make a decision about how to resolve the worst of the worst cases.  The easier cases rarely make it to court because they are resolved by agreement.

I don’t believe that it is right for judges to “sit in judgment” on how good or bad other people are.  It is a judge’s job to decide what the judge believes the facts to be based upon the evidence and to apply the law to the facts consistent with good public policy.  The comments the judge makes should be solely for the purpose of carrying out their duty to decide cases and uphold the integrity of our legal system.

Hopefully, you will never be in the position to have a judge having to make decisions about your life.  If you have advice and representation by the right lawyer, the uncertainty of court can be avoided the vast majority of the time.  The “preventative medicine” of seeking timely advice from the right lawyer can help you avoid many costly and painful experiences later.  At Advantage Denton, we research and find the right lawyer for you.  Have us find the right lawyer for you and avoid the risk of unnecessary court.

(Disclaimer: The judges and court commissioners that I work with are wonderful people and highly professional.  Though all of us can be reminded from time to time of these high-minded principles, this is not a slam against any of them.)

October 12, 2009

Why Free Is Not Free

Filed under: Uncategorized — Melissa Denton @ 2:05 pm

Melissa DentonI am an admitted technophile.  Yes, it is true that I will chase after the next free service that Google or some other reputable software giant offers.  Just as you trade your privacy and purchasing habits in to a store for their “frequent shopper” discounts, using these services often means that you are providing personal data and access to yourself for the provider of  “free” stuff to sell.

In lawyer finding, free is a lot less free than it is in software.  Spending your time searching for a lawyer is just that – spending.  You can look at “free” sources of information about lawyers and not see much unless you know what to look for.  It takes time and education to learn how to distinguish which lawyer is right for your needs.  How to avoid the lawyers that you should avoid is extremely difficult to learn, especially when you are under the stress of needing a lawyer’s advice in the first place. Some lawyers are good at self promotion and not at lawyering.

Some of the “free” sources of information about lawyers give you difficult to decipher information with a fire hose delivery.  Some of them will filter the information, all right.  At best, they give you the next name off of a paid list so that you can pay a $25-$50 fee to meet with that lawyer.  (Then the lawyer will usually have to send a percentage of money you pay to the lawyer back to the service that sent you.)  Many of the best lawyers do not need to pay like this for clients  – they are not next on the list or even on the list.  Other companies who limit which lawyers they send you to are even worse for you.  For “free” they send you to the lawyer who paid them the most money to buy access to you and your information.  Is that the right lawyer for you?  Often not.

Free is not free.  When major issues in your life or significant money is involved, you should be seeking the right lawyer in the right location with the right expertise and philosophical orientation.  Advantage Denton is the only company that researches the right lawyer for you.

We find the right lawyer for you.  We are not “free”, but “free” services cost you dearly.  The lawyers found by Advantage Denton, who give a half hour free appointment to you with no further commitment, are spending their time on you because we sought them out as the right lawyer for you and you are a legitimate client because you paid $99 to be connected to the right lawyer.  It is a worthwhile investment of the attorney’s time and it is a very worthwhile investment on your part.

“Free” makes me a little angry, because it often leads to people being connected to the wrong lawyer, which costs a whole lot more than $99.  If you have time to drink from a fire hose, know where all the places to look are, and have the knowledge to evaluate all the information you find there, maybe you should look for your own lawyer.  Hearing about a good lawyer from someone else is often a good way to get connected, but I will never forget my horror at learning who my former next door neighbor’s divorce lawyer was.  He was about the worst person (now disbarred) she could have had – but she did not know enough to tell that, even after using his services.  I hope she did not give a “free” referral to anyone else to use that lawyer….

October 11, 2009

It was the Best of Times

Filed under: Melissa Denton Posts — Melissa Denton @ 11:49 am

Melissa DentonIt seems that folks are always trying to make a quick buck by claiming that they are announcing some amazing piece of news that is the best or worst or most worrisome thing you have to know about right now.  If you pay attention to this particular information (and purchase some product advertised therewith) all kinds of positive things will flow.  Don’t pay attention to me right now at your own peril!

When Charles Dickens wrote his first sentence of A Tale of Two Cities, he provided us with some of the best perspective ever written in the English language –

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going direct the other way – in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.”

Perhaps Dickens was not particularly intending a lawyer in 2009 to enjoy this sentence so much or find it so apropos.   It nails human nature so very well, though.  As a historian and as an ongoing student of human behavior, I really think that this ironic encapsulation of the hubris of every day and age is spot on.  Those of us alive right now are experiencing an economic downturn of quite some severity together.  We just saw President Obama’s efforts to get the Olympics into Chicago soundly defeated.  We just had the surprise of President Obama winning the Nobel Peace Prize for the changed, hopeful, environment he has wrought on the world’s stage.   While all of these things are interesting to us, it always makes sense to recognize that human nature has not fundamentally changed.  These things will come and go and still we have the daily work of making a good life for ourselves and our loved ones.

Life is an ongoing struggle and if it were not, we would not have reason to know we are alive.  I find it really important to keep perspective and to remember those who came before.  Being aware of people who will inherit this culture and planet from us also gives valuable perspective.  When making a decision about what to do when you are embroiled in a controversy – do try to step back and find perspective so that you can be guided by wisdom beyond that of your immediate circumstances.

If you consult with others, particularly with experts about the controversy (hint: this means lawyers), you can gain some knowledge about what your options are and how your circumstances have been handled by others over time as encapsulated in our laws.  We are not alone and most of the issues we face have answers that others have already thought of.  Getting the right expert advice from the right lawyer can make all the difference in making wise decisions.

Advantage Denton would be happy to help you find the right lawyer to get this wisdom and perspective from.  We search from all available lawyers to select the attorney who will be right for you – the same one we would choose for a friend or family member who had the same need and circumstances as you.  This is far better than using a “free” company to steer you to whichever lawyers paid the most money to be on a list to get clients.  The best lawyers don’t need to pay money to get clients, so those “free” services cost you dearly when you get advice from the wrong lawyer.

I am not sure that it fits here, but Confucius said something like “I walk with two men and learn equally from both, the most wise and honorable man on one side and the most foolish and irresponsible on the other.”  From one, Confucius learns how to be, from the other he learns how not to be.  Don’t mistake one for the other, though.  Help getting the right lawyer can help you avoid that misery.  Have us find the right lawyer for you.

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