The Little Things


A few things to ponder...

When you have a legal team overseas, certain adjustments have to be made in order to keep a smooth line of communication. First, I realized I needed to change my phone plan to account for international calls. Second, I needed to check my email first thing in the morning so that I would be able to respond to my attorney in time before he left for the day (he was 6 hours ahead of me). These are small adjustments, but important ones. Also, the costs of mailing documents vs. scanning/pdfing them quickly become apparent – a three-day delivery of signed papers to my attorney cost me $144 to send, and that’s if customs lets it through. A scanner for your papers will do wonders. Anytime we tried to fax documents, it was an issue due to the fact that standard Italian/European fax paper has a different dimension than ours and is longer than American machines can process.

In the beginning, you will have A LOT of questions and emailing them one by one is not the most efficient way to get answers. Because of the time difference, language barriers and the fact your lawyer will be very busy on other cases too, I recommend that you keep a list of questions and email them once per week (if you have that much volume) in a bulleted format. This is easier for your attorney and easier for you to then print out and file as your case progresses.

Lastly, patience is a key component of working with an overseas attorney.  I have no great words of wisdom on that topic. At times, the wait for answers or information felt torturous. But I soon learned it was just part of the process and continued to take charge of the things that only I could control.

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