One major resource that more experienced attorneys have access to that new attorneys often do not is an extensive “Form Library.”  A Form Library is (at least in this age of technology) an electronic database of all the useful forms an attorney has come across in his/her years of practicing law.  Motions, Proposed Orders, letters of varying types for different purposes – all these are examples of documents an efficient attorney holds onto and adds to his/her Form Library.  The reason behind building a Form Library is to save time (instead of having to redraft something each time the attorney needs to file something, in essence reinventing the wheel each time, (s)he can look for a document that was used in a case similar to the one at hand and modify it as necessary) and so save his/her clients money (for a lawyer might only have to spend 10 hours on a case that (s)he might have had to spend 20 on if (s)he had to draft each document from scratch, and so can charge accordingly).

The new attorney looking to build up his/her Form Library can do so in a number of ways.  Certainly being on the lookout for useful documents is always a good thing, but can take time.  And, another popular method, when the new attorney has the need arise for a particular type of document, (s)he can always turn to his/her fellow attorneys in the community and ask if (s)he can see a sample of what others have produced.  New attorneys who go to work with an already established firm will similarly be able to lean on the more experienced attorneys in the firm (or the firm might already have a Form Library).  And, in my efforts to help new lawyers (indeed, that is the purpose behind the “Lawyering 101” series), I will try to add posts linking to forms in the “Online Legal Resources” Category when I come across them.  I hope it will prove helpful.  Until next time, I shall remain

Very Truly Yours,

– Nick Lee –

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