Whether you agree with Confucius (“Success depends upon previous preparation.”), Steve Jobs (“If you really look closely, most overnight successes took a long time.”), or Paul “Bear” Bryant (“It’s not the will to win that matters—everyone has that. It’s the will to prepare to win that matters.”), our professional responsibility dictates thorough pretrial preparation and investigation as the cornerstone of undertaking any legal matter. “Competent representation requires the legal knowledge, skill, thoroughness and preparation reasonably necessary for the representation.” ABA Model Rule 1.1. You owe it to your client, you owe it to the court (ABA Model Rule 3.1), you owe it to third parties (ABA Model Rule 4.4), and you owe it to yourself (ABA Model Rule 1.16).
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