Sometimes Opinions Change

As a matter progresses through the stages of litigation, the opinions of a paralegal or lawyer may change. Sometimes to your benefit, other times, not so much. A client’s expectations should adapt to those changes.

Newly introduced evidence or caselaw for example could change a representative’s perspective on your position, and the client should adapt to that new opinion, or they may end up with an outcome they were not anticipating.

Your feelings (unfortunately) do not matter in Court, and what you feel may not be reflected in the evidence or caselaw, and should you proceed based upon your feelings, and contrary to the evidence or caselaw, you unfortunately may end up very disappointed.

Recently, I settled a matter that I was confident that we would have some success. As we reached closer the Settlement Conference date, further evidence was provided by the other side, which resulted in my opinion on our success drastically reducing to almost zero.

Advising a client that the chance of success is now next to nothing where the anticipation of success was great, is not a pleasant conversation to have, but a conversation that needed to be had.
When I feel that our client will not be successful, I go into a mitigation mode meaning what can I do to get my client out of this matter paying as little to the other side as possible?

In this case, it was settling before the Settlement Conference, where they saved thousands of dollars off the amount of the claim, legal fees, and interest, which I still consider a win for the client.
If your representative has a change of opinion on the success of your claim or defence, always consider what they are saying and keep an open mind during litigation. They are looking out for your best interests.

Murray Brown, Licensed Paralegal