Confessions of a Laid-off Lawyer

Just Your Average Joe Blogging Away His Debt—In One Year or Less

Archive for August 15th, 2009

Hang a Shingle

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Total Black: $28.61
Total Red: $227,952.40
 

No windfall just yet, but getting there.  In my efforts to think outside the box and come up with different sources of income, I offered to help a colleague with the consulting work he does on the side.  Soon after getting laid-off in October 2008, I started working pro bono for one of the local prosecutor’s offices.  Another attorney started soon after me also as a pro bono attorney.  I bowed out in June so I could study for the Pennsylvania bar exam.  Getting licensed in Pennsylvania, assuming I passed, would be a safety-net in the hopefully unlikely event I had to move back in with my mother; can’t practice law without being licensed.  Anyway, this colleague and I kinda got to know each other since we had a few things in common: both working for free, both lived in Europe for a few years, both a bit older than most of the other attorneys we worked with.  And we’ve kept in sporadic contact since I left.  Earlier this week he called to ask a question; we got to talking and he mentioned how overwhelmed he’s been lately with full-time pro bono work and all the consulting work he does on the side.  I’ve got job hunting to do, but I offered to help out, figuring he’d just want a proofreader, a fresh set of eyes.  He said if he did, he’d let me know.  Yesterday he called: he needs much more than a proofreader and will pay me $1,500 for the work.  That’s almost one month’s rent.  Pretty cool.  As we discussed the work he needed help with, we touched on his growing anxiety and frustration about not knowing what he’s doing, or whether he’s doing it correctly, or what will happen once these one-off tasks are completed.  (Two of his “clients” aren’t even paying him because they’re his friends’ companies.)  More on all this in a bit. Keep reading . . .