Sunday, August 17, 2008

Time Sheets

There’s an old lawyer’s joke that up at the pearly gates, an aide approaches St. Peter and excitedly informs him that a real celebrity has arrived. A man who has broken Methuselah’s record for longevity by living more than 969 years. When St. Peter reached the newcomer, he is surprised to find that the alleged record-breaker doesn’t look very old at all. Suspicious, St. Peter enquires, “Did you really live 969 years?” To which the newcomer replies, “Sort of. I’m a lawyer and I went by my billing sheets.”

I thought of this story when a lawyer friend of mine in Chicago informed me that a lawyer out her way is in very serious trouble with the Illinois Supreme Court’s Disciplinary Council because he got caught billing 40 hours on one day. If he had consulted with me, I could have told him there is a perfectly reasonable explanation for that.

He must have started work on a project just as he left Tokyo on an eastbound flight and, allowing for the International Date Line, he could do 40 billable hours in one day.

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