If Hiccup, a nerdy Norse teenager can train a dragon, you can train your attorney. And by train, I mean train your attorney to like you and work extra hard for you. In theory, attorneys should work equally hard for every client. Reality, however, is different from theory. In reality, if your attorney likes you, he or she will work harder for you. Remember, your attorney is human just like every other human.

So, the question becomes: how do I train my attorney to like me? Here are some thoughts.

First, compliment your attorney. When your attorney writes a quality pleading or makes an effective argument in court, make an effort to point that out. If you compliment your attorney in public (e.g., to your family or to your attorney’s boss), so much the better.

Second, do what your attorney asks you to do. When your attorney asks you to get a document or fill out something, do it right then. Attorneys love, love clients who trust them enough to do what they ask when they ask.

Third, pay your bill on time. Paying a bill is a sign of respect for the work your attorney is doing. If you always pay your bill in full and on time, your attorney will know and will appreciate your respect.

Fourth, get in good with your attorney’s assistant or paralegal. Assistants and paralegals are the workhorses of law firms. If you are kind and nice to your attorney’s assistant, that assistant will rave about you to your attorney. Good things will follow.

Fifth, say thank you. For the love of heaven, say thank you. Being an attorney (especially a divorce and family law attorney) is pretty thankless. It seems no matter how hard attorneys work for people, no matter the great outcomes they obtain in case, clients don’t appreciate much. If you say thank you early and often to your attorney, your attorney will go to hell and back for you.

Sixth, refer people to your attorney. There is no greater indication you trust and respect your attorney than referring people. If you refer friends and family to your attorney during your case, you have made yourself a serious asset to that attorney. I can almost guarantee your attorney will work extra hard on your case if you refer work to him or her.

Remember, with a little work you can train your attorney to work extra hard on your case and provide you with world-class legal service.

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