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IBA: Did You Know?

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Depression will affect more than 19 million Americans this year, and according to a Johns Hopkins University study lawyers have the highest rate of depression among the 28 occupations they reviewed.

Depression among lawyers is not a new phenomenon. President Abraham Lincoln suffered from depression his entire life.

There are resources for those seeking help for themselves or others. The Indiana Judges and Lawyers Assistance Program exists to provide such help, and their communication is confidential. They may be reached at 317-833-0370 or toll free at 866-428-5527. If a call to a peer is preferred, there is a list of attorney/judge volunteers on the JLAP website who are available to provide confidential assistance.

Bar associations from around the country have also posted online information about depression that is specific to the needs of the legal community. The Bar Association of Erie County has an informative video to help identify symptoms and provide solutions, and the Texas Lawyers Assistance Program has a similar video and materials, as well.

Members of the Indianapolis legal community in need of information are welcome to make a confidential inquiry to Julie Armstrong, IndyBar Executive Director. She may be reached at jarmstrong@indybar.org or 317.269.2000. Lawyers are problem-solvers, but struggling with depression is not a problem anyone should try to solve alone. There’s help.•

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  1. Bill Satterlee is, indeed, a true jazz aficionado. Part of my legal career was spent as an associate attorney with Hoeppner, Wagner & Evans in Valparaiso. Bill was instrumental (no pun intended) in introducing me to jazz music, thereby fostering my love for this genre. We would, occasionally, travel to Chicago on weekends and sit in on some outstanding jazz sessions at Andy's on Hubbard Street. Had it not been for Bill's love of jazz music, I never would have had the good fortune of hearing it played live at Andy's. And, most likely, I might never have begun listening to it as much as I do. Thanks, Bill.

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  3. Fiat justitia ruat caelum is a Latin legal phrase, meaning "Let justice be done though the heavens fall." The maxim signifies the belief that justice must be realized regardless of consequences.

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  5. Additional Points: -Civility in the profession: Treating others with respect will not only move others to respect you, it will show a shared respect for the legal system we are all sworn to protect. When attorneys engage in unnecessary personal attacks, they lose the respect and favor of judges, jurors, the person being attacked, and others witnessing or reading the communication. It's not always easy to put anger aside, but if you don't, you will lose respect, credibility, cases, clients & jobs or job opportunities. -Read Rule 22 of the Admission & Discipline Rules. Capture that spirit and apply those principles in your daily work. -Strive to represent clients in a manner that communicates the importance you place on the legal matter you're privileged to handle for them. -There are good lawyers of all ages, but no one is perfect. Older lawyers can learn valuable skills from younger lawyers who tend to be more adept with new technologies that can improve work quality and speed. Older lawyers have already tackled more legal issues and worked through more of the problems encountered when representing clients on various types of legal matters. If there's mutual respect and a willingness to learn from each other, it will help make both attorneys better lawyers. -Erosion of the public trust in lawyers wears down public confidence in the rule of law. Always keep your duty to the profession in mind. -You can learn so much by asking questions & actively listening to instructions and advice from more experienced attorneys, regardless of how many years or decades you've each practiced law. Don't miss out on that chance.

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