Would You Rather Be Happy or Be Right?

By Attorney Gregg Herman
July 25, 2014

My friend, Phil Tucker, posted on FB a link to an article entitled “Do You Want To Be Right Or Do You Want To Be Happy?” It makes an excellent point. What’s disappointing is that she got the advice from a friend, not her divorce lawyer. In fact, her divorce lawyer apparently recommended the opposite.

Of course, the reason for the divorce lawyer’s recommendation may have been the lawyer’s economic interest rather than the clients. But, lawyers should be professionals – and most are – which means advice should be what is best for the client, not for the lawyer.

It is not infrequent that the client’s best interest is for less economic return in exchange for peace and security. This is not an easy equation to calculate. But, the point is that maximum finances does not always equal maximum happiness. Good divorce lawyers practice a holistic approach – as my late partner, Leonard Loeb, used to say: “The goal is to get the best financial results for a client without creating or adding to the degree of animosity which would prevent the parties from walking down the aisle together at their childrens’ weddings.”

Usually, the goals of maximum financial results and avoiding warfare and sympathetic. Where they are not, as this article points out, the long range interest of the client may not always be to get the last dollar.

Attorney Gregg Herman is a founding partner of Loeb & Herman S.C. in Milwaukee, WI. He practices family law exclusively, and can be reached via e-mail or by calling (414) 272-5632.