What Economic Impact Do Lawyers Have on South Carolina?

The South Carolina Bar asked Dr. Joseph C. Von Nessen of the Darla Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina just that question. Dr. Von Nessen's report, entitled "The Economic Impact of the Legal Profession on South Carolina", was recently presented at the SC BAR Annual Convention in Myrtle Beach.

Excerpts of the report have been posted below:

  • There are 9,941attorneys practicing in the State of South Carolina, this total considers all active and non-retired members, including judges & law clerks;
  • The combination of the direct, indirect, and induced impacts leads to a total impact of nearly $2.7 billion on the state of South Carolina that is associated with the legal profession;
  • Every $100 spent by the legal profession leads to an additional $60 in total economic activity;
  • The state of South Carolina was then broken down into regions to further quantify the economical impact;
  • The Midlands, Upstate, and Charleston regions were the top three major metropolitan impact regions;
  • The Upstate Region was made up of  Abbeville, Anderson, Cherokee, Greenville, Greenwood, Laurens, McCormick, Oconee, Pickens, Spartanburg, & Union;
  • As the second largest economical impact region, the Upstate Region has a total impact of $487 million in economic output, $217 million in labor income, and 4,161 jobs.

You can now take back all those nasty things you've said about lawyers. Next time you see an attorney, thank them for having such an immense economical impact on the growth and well being of this great state of South Carolina.




How Watching Pawn Stars Can Help Plaintiff's Lawyers

My fiancee and I are avid fans of the History Channel's -"Pawn Stars".  The more I watch the reality show about people bringing in unique, bizarre, and rare things they want to sell or pawn the more applications I see in my day to day activities as a plaintiff's lawyer in South Carolina

Negotiating 101 may be taught at law schools but it wasn't taught at mine. There were classes about the history of law and other BS classes to help you think, read, and write but nothing to integrate the application of the present situation that wonderful history of law has brought upon us.

In comes a better application than my clients references of "Law & Order"-- "Pawn Stars". Law students, new lawyers, and inexperienced plaintiff's lawyers save yourself some time and money and just watch the show. You can learn a lot of things about negotiating with evil insurance companies by watching the interaction between the pawn store employees and the customers:

  1. Never start at the price you eventually want to get. You can always go down in a negotiation but you seldom can go up and expect talks to continue.
  2. Research your case before you go try and sell it. If you don't know what you have, how can you know what it is worth?
  3. If neither side knows the true value of the case, get experts involved. Experts can help you both come to a conclusion about the value. (Although when both sides get one it is almost guaranteed they will say opposite things). 
  4. Body language is important in face to face negotiations. The term "poker face" was popular for a reason. (Even before Lady Gaga).
  5. Know when to walk away from the bargaining table. Sometimes you are not going to get the price you want or even reach a compromise. It's alright to leave the table and seek greener pastures or avenues.


Pawn Stars Haggling 101