March 2004 Issue
Randolph M. James does a lot more than simply hang out a shingle to announce his solo law practice in Winston-Salem, N.C. That would be like fishing in a pond with a cane pole.
He’s trawling the seas.
And he’s casting ever-widening nets. James still runs an ad in the Yellow Pages, though he’s been shrinking it the past few years, down to dollar-bill size from three-fourths of a page. The smaller one costs him $36,000 a year and he plans to cut back more, keeping just enough space to list practice areas and, most important, his Web site address.
Feeling his way around in recent years, James tried paying $1,500 for referrals from a products liability Web site and got nothing for it. It might be that consumers searching the Web for a lawyer understand terms like “lemon law” better than they do “products liability.” He also pays a bit more than $100 annually to subscribe to www.bigclassaction.com, but the big one hasn’t come his way yet.
Karen Marie Shook never had met William G. Milliken until just a few months ago. But Milliken already had profoundly touched Shook’s life twice.
Depending on whom you ask, Malik Jarno is either: A mentally challenged, orphaned teenager born in Guinea, with an IQ of about 60, who arrived in the United States bearing false identification papers and a plane ticket obtained by a friend in France who grew tired of caring for him; or he is a 20-something man, possibly born in the Congo, who tried to sneak into the States using papers he knew and understood were fake.