Law Library

New ABA book is a ­comprehensive toolkit for advancing lawyer wellness

The new ABA book, “The Best Lawyer You Can Be: A Guide to Physical Mental, Emotional, and Spiritual Wellness,” is a comprehensive toolkit for lawyers that addresses the stress and emotional challenges that often come with a career in the law.

It’s no secret that law is a profession with a particularly high incidence of stress, divorce, substance abuse and suicide. In this groundbreaking multi-dimensional collection, you can find tools and information that enable you to have both a successful career and a happy, satisfied life. These tools will teach you how to harness the transformative power of being more relational and less transactional.

Happy lawyers have emotional intelligence, resilience and mindfulness. “The Best Lawyer You Can Be” provides step-by-step behavioral guidance from recognized experts to what is essential for maintaining physical and emotional health and stability in the competitive environment of lawyering.

The book is edited by Stewart Levine, an attorney, mediator, management consultant and coach. He creates resolution and agreement in the most challenging circumstances and has written and spoken extensively for more than 35 years. He is the author of the best-seller “Getting to Resolution: Turning Conflict into Collaboration.”


New ABA book discusses how law firms can deliver high-value service to clients

Satisfying client demands and meeting client expectations is essential for a law firm to succeed in today’s ever-changing legal climate, where corporate clients are demanding higher-value legal service because they have seen their legal fees continue to escalate without a demonstration of increased, proportionate business value.

The American Bar Association’s recently published book, “The Value-Able Law Firm: Delivering Client-Focused, Higher-Value Legal Service for Clients and Law Firms,” provides lawyers a new approach to analyzing and discussing, both internally and with clients, the issues related to defining, measuring and implementing higher-value legal service. The chapters are based on the concept of value-related qualities (VRQs) that law firms can use to re-orient their service so that the client’s interest and goals serve as the lodestars of the firm’s service and effort.

“The Value-Able Law Firm” begins with the basics, recognizing that value represents the relationship between the “cost” of something and the “benefit” that one realizes because of it. To help lawyers satisfy their clients’ demands and meet expectations, this essential resource delivers an approach that is simple, practical and consistent, addressing:

• The definition, deliverance and measurement of value;

• Incorporation value-related qualities (VRQs);

• The client’s view on value delivery;

• How a law firm provides value and becomes a client-centric firm;

• The establishment of a productive, value-able relationship for both client and firm.

Co-authors Steven Lauer and Kenneth L. Vermilion share the benefits of incorporating VRQs into a law firm’s service delivery that will include improved client relationships, enhanced client satisfaction, and more efficient and effective representation. The book discusses how lawyers can set up their firm to succeed in the increasingly competitive environment for corporate representation.


ABA publication of new book, ‘A Manual of Style for Contract Drafting,’ already best-seller

The American Bar Association Business has published the fourth edition of “A Manual of Style for Contract Drafting,” which is the ABA Business Law Section’s best-selling book of 2018. With 100 pages of new and updated material, author Kenneth A. Adams has created a uniquely in-depth survey of the building blocks of contract language.

First published in 2004, the manual offers those who draft, review, negotiate or interpret contracts an alternative to the dysfunction of traditional contract language and the inertia and flawed conventional wisdom that perpetuate it. This manual has become a vital resource throughout the legal profession, in the United States and internationally.

This manual’s focus remains how to express contract terms in prose that is free of the archaisms, redundancies, ambiguities and other problems that afflict traditional contract language. Adams highlights common sources of confusion and recommends clearer and more concise alternatives. This manual is organized to facilitate easy reference, and it illustrates its analysis with numerous examples.

The book’s author is a consultant, writer and speaker on contract drafting. Through his company, Adams Contracts Consulting LLC, in New York, he helps companies improve their contracts and their contract process. Adams also acts as an expert in contract disputes.


New ABA book offers tips  to build and refine an ­effective law practice

The new ABA book “Building a Better Law Practice: Become a Better Lawyer in Five Minutes a Day” is packed with small steps that lawyers can take to improve their careers and build effective and successful law practices. A few minutes a day with this easy-to-read guide will help seasoned as well as young lawyers improve their careers.

The book eschews flash-in-the-pan gimmicks in favor of stories and vignettes that illustrate proven practices in case management, client development and the daily tasks of being a better lawyer. All lawyers are best served when they are stronger at their craft. “Building a Better Law Practice” helps lawyers effectively manage and communicate with clients, handle cases more efficiently and become confident in their practice by providing practical and readily implementable systems and suggestions.

Author Jeremy W. Richter is an attorney with Webster, Henry, Lyons, Bradwell, Cohan & Speagle, P.C., in Birmingham, Ala. He practices civil defense litigation and focuses on commercial auto/trucking litigation, premises liability, general business liability and various other aspects of insurance defense litigation. Richter blogs about interests ranging from civil litigation, transportation and workers’ compensation to legal history and goal setting.