The Campaign For DA

2.02.2016

I Would Not Want To Be A Tarrant County Lawyer Right Now



The Tarrant County Criminal Defense Lawyers Association might be in dire straits.

For years the only way you could get the files from the Tarrant DA's office electronically (the DA's office always had an in person open file policy) was to become a member of the association for a fee. That's insane. (I don't practice there so I never cared.)

But due to Texas prosecutorial corruption, the Michael Morton Act was passed requiring prosecutors to turn copies of their files over for a free. (Shocking! Shocking I tell you!) But that new law apparently has caused the membership in that Tarrant County association to plummet. (Go figure.) 

But this is what prompted this post: Check out this email that the association sent which was forwarded to me by more than one person: "You are receiving this email because our records indicate that you have not renewed your membership for 2016. Our association no longer has a monopoly on electronic discovery. However, there are many reasons why membership in TCCDLA is worth the cost. Over half of last year's membership have not renewed, so please take the time and go to our website and renew for the year. When you go to the website, do not log in the main login. Log in the TCCDLA store only. Once logged in, you should be able to renew. If you have any problems, call Storm's Edge at (817) 284-[xxxx]." (Emphasis added.)

Monopoly? Good lord. Words have meaning. Why didn't they just say we can no longer rob you because you had no other option? Then throw in the "many reasons" why membership is important without listing what they are causes a question mark to form over every reader's head. And, just for fun, let's make it complicated to renew online. And, finally, use the the very seductive phrase of "half of last year's membership have not renewed", and this causes me to think the email needs to be taught in every marketing class in America. 

(Side note: Storm's Edge is some for-profit IT company. It will also be the name of my next dog. But then that would make my dog sound like a stripper.)

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

One thing I will say about the Harris County Criminal Lawyer's Association is that it is very active, has fantastic and dirt-cheap CLE, and has a fantastic listserv. It is worth every penny, and then some, to be a member. If I could drop the state bar and only join HCCLA, I would do that. I have already dumped the Houston Bar Association, which is as worthless as the State Bar.

Rusty said...

Your email sounds as though it was written by what we call in my industry a "Chad and/or Misty" ...a low level person or two, proficient in tickling the keyboards to nudge the software forward but, not so proficient in use of the language, the brain, or thinking beyond their own narrow purview.

Of course, there should be a credible supervisor overseeing these people before loosing their product on the world at large but, in an ongoing era of relentless cost cutting with little regard to the overall health of an enterprise beyond the balance sheet, we get a sizable flow of relatively unintelligible gibberish through which to wade.

Doncha just love the computer age versions of ignorant left vs. right hand cock-ups?

Anonymous said...

I don't quite understand. What about this makes practicing law in Tarrant County a bad thing?

Anonymous said...

Words have meaning.

Although you wouldn't know it from a good number of posts on this blog...

Anonymous said...

Why does this email (and a honest one at that) have any bearing why you would or would not want to be a Tarrant County attorney?

Anonymous said...

While the former DA made the files (sort of) available electronically, they didn't allow any way for the lawyers to actually access them. The TCCDLA made a system in coordination with Tarrant County to make that happen. There is far more to the story than you are telling here. Without TCCDLA we simply could not have gotten the files. That shit ain't free my friend.

Anonymous said...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electronic_Case_Filing_System

I suggest reading the paragraph about changes in 2005.

Chad and/or Misty said...

Don't be hatin'!

Anonymous said...

Posts like this make me wonder if BG is qualified to hold public office.

Anonymous said...

Posts like that make me know BG is qualified!

Anonymous said...

The TCDA's office in no onger what it was since the new regime took over. Morale is low, turnover high and many of the best support staff are retired or moved on. This email looks amateurish at best, rude at worst. Look fior more comedy to come out of these folks. Pass the popcorn, this is getting interesting.