Denver Real Estate Law and Family Law Blog. (Vol 1.55) April 11, 2015
By Craig Franklin Chambers Esq. 7851 S. Elati Street #204, Littleton, CO 80120
The Littleton Lawyer.
I am a Littleton, Colorado real estate lawyer and family law attorney, focusing my practice in Denver, Englewood, Centennial, Littleton, Highlands Ranch, and the surrounding areas. It's been 18 years to the day that I received my license to practice law. I know this because today is my daughter's birthday, and I received my passing bar exam score by mail in the morning of April 11, 1997. My daughter was born later that day.
So much has changed since I got my law license. In 1997, the internet was new, legal research was performed spending hours using the books in the law library, and communication was still by mail or telephone. The city was smaller, and the lawyers knew each other. Now communications are now all by email, and you no longer need a law library to practice law, because all of your legal research can be done on-line.
I've learned a lot about the practice of law in the last 18 years. The practice of law is very different than what I learned in law school. In law school, I lived in that utopian world of civilized discourse. Nothing was really at stake because nothing was real. In the practice of law, you help people with real problems, sometimes severe, complicated problems, often compounded by the flaws in the legal system, a system that is supposed to help them.
In the practice of law, you live in the world of unreliable witnesses, un-trustworthy opposing counsel, and disenchanted judges, and navigating through the personalities of the practice of law is harder than the practice of law itself.
I still see new lawyers come along with the law school "shot-gun" approach to cases, over-reaching in the facts and law, hoping that one of the claims for relief will work out. In fact, that approach only serves to confuse and frustrate the legal system.
One thing I learned is that the practice of law is specialized and each field is filled with nuances. That is why is I specialize in divorce and family law on the one hand and real estate transactions and real estate law on the other. Some areas of law are so complicated, for example, estate planning or labor law cases, you really need to find someone who lives and breathes that type of law.
The most important thing I learned is that when I approach a case, I try and think how a judge will think. Look at the case from a judge's point of view. And how the judge rules will be largely based on his impression of viewing the case in a few short hours. That means the judge will be swayed by facts and evidence, not emotion.
The practice of law is developing the facts, finding and developing the law, and applying the law to the facts you've developed. Witnesses are usually more convincing than documentary evidence, though exhibits are important to a jury or a judge. The fact finder truly has a limited interest in the case, and the easier you make it for them the better.
The best lawyers are grey. Not flamboyant, emotional speakers but nerdy factual ones.
I guess you could say it was an exciting day, April 11, 1999. For four years, I went to law school at DU, while working at Re/Max and then Cherry Creek Properties, supporting a wife and three boys. Passing the bar was the last obstacle to becoming a licensed, practicing attorney, and the privilege of representing my clients forever changed the way I live and view the world.