While no two days at the office are exactly the same, most days usually look a little something like this for me: get to the office, grab a cup of coffee, check emails, make a to do list, get to work on any pending assignments, grab lunch with some of the attorneys (usually at Edge or PM Fish & Steakhouse), continue working on any assignments I have, and then depending on the day, head to a Summer Associate social event! However, today, I took a break from my usual schedule to venture off from the office and see what practicing as a litigation attorney is like. Specifically, Sophia and I got to attend a tag along with the infamous duo, Mitch Widom and Raquel Fernandez.
As some of my fellow Summer Associates have explained, a “tag along” is when you attend a hearing or client meeting with an attorney. The purpose of tag alongs is so that as Summer Associates we get a full understanding of what every attorney’s practice consists of. The tag along I attended was a summary judgment hearing. Not only was I excited because this was my first litigation tag along, but I actually conducted research and drafted a memorandum relating to the matter.
At the hearing, Sophia and I got to see Mitch argue before the judge as to why he should grant their motion for summary judgment. As soon as Mitch began arguing, we saw the value in having a thorough understanding of the facts of your client’s case, knowing relevant case law inside and out, and having all of your materials organized so that they are easily accessible for both you and the judge. Most importantly however, we saw why having strong oral advocacy skills is necessary as a litigator. Mitch (unsurprisingly) was exemplary.
After the hearing, Mitch and Raquel took us around the courthouse to meet some of the judges. It was so nice to see the comradery between judges and attorneys. Afterwards, we had lunch at a restaurant across the street. Mitch and Raquel told us that this was THE place that litigators and judges go for lunch — Sophia and I were getting the full “litigator experience.” Lunch was filled with good food, great conversation, and at one point, Mitch used his advocacy skills to persuade us as hypothetical jurors!
Overall, we had quite the exciting day. While not everyday as a litigator consists of going to court, this is something you have to be comfortable doing as a litigator. In addition, this is something you have to LOVE doing — which is something we saw from Mitch and Raquel. i look forward to attending more litigation tag alongs as the summer (sadly) comes to an end.