If you have had any significant interactions with any attorney during the course of your life, and if you have even a remote interest in golf, you have almost certainly played at least a few rounds with your attorney. Attorneys tend to love golf, most likely because attorneys view the intricate sets of rules and decorum involved in a round of golf as a near-perfect reflection of the practice of law. Golf, like civil litigation, is viewed as an age old sport steeped in tradition. The rules of golf, like those of the courtroom, were meant to provide a general lay of the land to allow participants to know exactly how to proceed from start to finish. However, attorneys quickly realized that the rules dictating their behavior and actions in court were not so much rules to be followed as they were boundaries to be pushed. With these realizations, attorneys came to understand that they could win cases by having a mastery of the finer points of procedure even where their clients did not have the best case. Eventually, these procedural games have become almost as important as the underlying facts of the case to the attorneys who use them as weapons every day.
In much the same way, your attorney almost certainly relishes the rules of golf, realizing that a mastery of those rules can propel them to victory in a match that their skills might not otherwise allow. Your attorney likely has an encyclopedic memory of the rules of golf, and uses that memory to his or her advantage whenever possible. So how do you determine how important you are to your attorney? Go ahead and break those rules the next time you play a round of golf with him. Kick that ball out of a divot and into a more favorable lie. Ground that club in a hazard. See how many times you can break minor rules before your attorney says something to you about it. It is an absolute certainty that he sees it every time. If you can get away with five or more breaches in a single round without hearing a word about it, you are likely a very important client! At the very least, you can be sure you will be driving your attorney nuts in the meantime. But take solace in the fact that the same way of thinking that makes those rules so important on the golf course will serve you well when that same attorney is fighting for you in court. And if you ever need someone to play a round of golf with, the attorneys at Navigato & Battin are here to help!