Jonathan L. Loew, special counsel at Much Shelist, took some time to answer a few of our questions.
What do you like most about your practice?
I like the creativity of it. The areas in which I practice are always evolving and no two cases are alike. Particularly, I enjoy revisiting established legal concepts and finding ways to apply them in my cases. These days, there are a lot of demands for lawyers to be innovative in their approach to providing the best possible legal and business counsel, and this gives me an opportunity to be creative. It’s wonderful when a judge appreciates the time and effort I put into my work. I also accept and embrace my role as an officer of the court, quaint as that may sound. I’m proud that my work helps the court reach an informed decision in the cases in which I participate.
What is the biggest challenge of your practice?
Much of my practice involves writing legal briefs. Judges are inundated with cases, and spend much of their time reading briefs. These documents are a lawyer’s chance to talk directly to the judge. Out of respect for the demands on a judge’s time, it is necessary to make written points concisely, credibly, accurately, and in a way that gains and holds the judge’s interest and commands respect. I often face this challenge when writing briefs.
What advice do you have for new lawyers?
Work hard, but save time for yourself, your family and your friends. Ask questions and don’t pretend you know something if you don’t. Be reliable, be polite and look for the positives in every situation. Find trustworthy mentors who will share their experiences, build your confidence and serve as admirable models for how law should be practiced. Talk to judges to find out what they expect from you. Don’t isolate yourself—other lawyers are valuable sounding boards and will become treasured colleagues and friends as the years go by. Continuously work on your writing skills as they will be extremely important throughout your career.