Many attorneys are solo practitioners rather than members of large firms. Some solo attorneys practice law on their own because they want to stay small in the type or size of cases they handle. Their focus may be representing only individuals or small companies and they may prefer to handle only small cases.
But solo does not necessarily mean small.
As a member of a large firm of over 200 attorneys, I handled regulatory cases and litigation that involved multi-million dollar cleanups and over 100 parties. While I used the help of my colleagues as needed, the team was normally not as large as five attorneys and/or legal assistants, much less 20 or 200. The apparent benefit of the large firm was the availability of others, even though they were rarely needed.
As a solo attorney, I continue to handle the same cases – and I have the same support systems. I have an assistant who works with me daily. I have other litigators and attorneys who specialize in environmental law to work with me on an ‘of counsel’ basis for any matter where a larger team is needed. And I have relationships with many law firms, some of which have offered to take me on ‘of counsel’ for a given matter if the case I am retained to handle calls for such support. Other resources that can support lead counsel such as me on a demanding case include remote support staff, contract paralegals, part-time document management specialists, consultants and more. In short, the same support systems are available to the solo practitioner and large firm alike.
Whether you are being sued in federal court over an expensive cleanup, trying to move an old site away from remedy failure and toward closure, working on a sediment cleanup in coordination with GLNPO under the Great Lakes Legacy Act, trying to find a solution to a multi-party site involving many companies with competing interests, or working on a complex business transaction that involves environmental issues, reach out for counsel who has experience and who can and will devote his or her time to your case. If you hire me, whether I am with a large firm or solo, you get me – my experience and my attention. The support we need will be put in place either way.