Archive for June, 2011

LawReader Special Report: Attorney Ed Bourne Takes a Bride!

Wednesday, June 8th, 2011

 By Senior Editor Stan Billingsley   June 8, 2011

 LawReader has made an inquiry to the law office of Owenton attorney Ed Bourne concerning reports that he had recently surrendered his bachelorhood and had taken a bride. 

 Billie J. Stiles Johnson, Assistant to Edward M. Bourne, confirmed the rumor:

“The rumor is true. He married Courtney French on Wednesday, May 25. I was a witness to this historic event. ”

 Mrs. Bourne was raised in Gallatin County where her father was the Judge-Executive.  She is currently employed in the Office of the Governor in Frankfort.  As anyone who knows Mr. Bourne would expect, she is as intelligent as she is beautiful.

 LawReader considers this event as equal to the retirement of Charley Sheen from the television program “Two And-A-Half Men”.

 We can report that many female eyes are filled with tears and their repressed dreams are dashed.  Many men who envied his masculine freedom are chagrined and looking for another hero.

 We extend our wishes for a bright future to Mr. and Mrs. Bourne.

Federal Judge Imposes Rule 11 Sanction against Eric Deters for $12,765 for frivolous suit against prosecutors

Wednesday, June 8th, 2011

– U.S. District Judge William Bertelsman has ordered Independence lawyer Eric Deters to pay Kenton Commonwealth’s Attorney Rob Sanders and his assistant $12,765.45 for defending a frivolous lawsuit Deters filed against the two.  The authority for such an award is based on a civil procedure rule known as Rule 11.

The award is to cover the prosecutors’ costs and  legal fees.

The sanction stems from when Deters sued Sanders, assistant Leanne Beck and two Covington police officers in April 2010 on behalf of Steven Scott of Orlando, Fla. The man was arrested and held in jail for five months before authorities realized they had the wrong person.

In December, Bertelsman ruled the prosecutors have immunity but the case against the police  officers was allowed to continue.

Deters said he will appeal Bertelsman’s decision to levy sanctions. Deters said the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati is “fair” and that he has had success there.

Deter’s in a LawReader interview, expressed the opinion that the issue of whether prosecutors should have immunity for knowingly prosecuting a defendant whom they know is innocent, should be taken all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court

“I hope to change the law,” Deters said, adding that a prosecutor should not have immunity if he or she knows someone is innocent and prosecutes them anyway.

Under Kentucky law prosecutors have qualified immunity for their actions in the investigative stage of a case, but have absolute immunity during the actual prosecution of a case.

HB 463 Makes over 115 changes in Kentucky Drug, Parole, Sentencing Law

Tuesday, June 7th, 2011

  In House Bill 463 over 115 amendments have been made to Kentucky Law.  Some of these laws became effective the first week of June but others will not become effective until 2012 or 2013.

  LawReader has compiled these new statutes which may be reviewed by LawReader members at LEGISLATIVE ADMENDMENTS 2011 SESSION  

 The following topics are affected by this new legislation.  Anyone dealing with sentencing, drug offenses, operation of jails, parole, probation, or prisoner registration or release issues, should closely review this new legislation.

PARTIAL TOPICS LISTING:

sentencing policy

regulation of controlled substances

prescription for a controlled substance

Presumptive probation

trafficking in a controlled substance

possession of a controlled substance

possession of marijuana

possession of synthetic cannabinoid agonists or piperazines

drug court program

postincarceration supervision,

the full board, may review the case of any prisoner and release that prisoner on parole despite any elimination of or minimum time for parole eligibility, when the prisoner has a documented terminal medical condition likely to result in death within one (1) year

sexual offense parole

Community supervision

parole contingent upon completion of a program

parole credit for prior receive a credit on his or her sentence for:

Prior confinement

 

administrative regulations to implement conditional parole

 

appropriate housing for a prisoner who is considered for or who is granted  PAROLE

 

pretrial release of a person

 

guidelines for judges to use when ordering pretrial release and monitored conditional release for defendants  

 

amount of the bail for all charges shall be encompassed by a single amount of bail

 

When a court considers pretrial release and bail for an arrested defendant, the court shall consider whether the defendant constitutes a flight risk, is unlikely to appear for trial, or is likely to be a danger to the public if released.

evidence-based practices”

supervised individual on parole shall receive compliance credits

early termination of probation

community supervision for

The department shall develop an online system based on state statistics of actual offenders to provide courts, attorneys, probation and parole officers, and victims with objective information for use in plea negotiations and sentencing.

local corrections assistance fund

Any bill, amendment, or committee substitute that creates a new crime, increases the penalty for an existing crime, decreases the penalty for an existing crime, changes the elements of the offense for an existing crime, repeals an existing crime, or proposes to increase, decrease, or otherwise impact incarceration shall be identified by the drafter as having a corrections impact on a “Corrections Impact Statement” form

The county governing body shall prescribe rules for the government, security, safety, and cleanliness of the jail and the comfort and treatment of prisoners,

a jail may impose a reasonable fee for the use of jail medical facilities by a state prisoner

Local correctional facility

regional jail authority

probation, shock probation, conditional discharge, home incarceration

A defendant who has been sentenced to jail for failure to pay a fine or court costs or for failure to appear in court on a date set for the sole purpose of addressing nonpayment of a fine or court costs shall receive credit against the fine and costs owed for each day the defendant spends in jail at the following rates:

postincarceration supervision

An inmate may challenge a failure of the Department of Corrections to award a sentencing credit under this section or the amount of credit awarded by motion made in the sentencing court no later than thirty (30) days after the inmate has exhausted his or her administrative remedies

The Chief Justice may authorize the Administrative Office of the Courts to develop, collect, and maintain a listing of persons who have had their records sealed

Complete Text of Brief of Hon. Lawrence Forgy in behalf of attorney Eric Deters

Monday, June 6th, 2011

SUPREME COURT OF KENTUCKY

INQUIRY COMMISSION

KBA 15674, 15681, 15745, 15859, 16024 & 16795

 

 

IN RE: ERIC C. DETERS

 

            KBA MEMBERSHIP NO. 81812

 

            BAR ROSTER ADDRESS:            5247 Madison Place

                                                            Independence, Kentucky 41051

 

 

* * * * * *

 

SUPPLEMENTAL ARGUMENT BY COUNSEL

 

“Fighting for the right is the greatest

sport this world affords.” Theodore Roosevelt

This approach to the Board of Governors is made because a serious injustice is in process. Attorney, Eric Deters is threatened with an extensive suspension of one-hundred eighty days (180) from his profession.  This approach is made pro bono.

As this Board also dedicates its time without remuneration, we are all in somewhat the same predicament, facing a serious decision without any benefit or personal gain.  You as a Board also face institutional responsibility that will have extended effect on one of Kentucky’s important regulatory organizations.  You probably feel a divided interest, to do the right thing, but to be loyal to the institution you are elected to foster, promote and serve.  Many, probably this Board included, feel the Bar Association is at a crucial juncture in its disciplinary function.

The great Dr. Otis A. Singletary, long term President of the University of Kentucky, and my mentor, constantly struggled with his Board of Trustees regarding its role in the governance of that institution.  In tight places, should the Board support the administration or substitute its own judgment.  An example, should the able, but controversial, Harry Caudill, despite some Board Members strong opposition, have been conferred an honorary Doctoral Degree, to which he had been elected by the faculty Senate.  Singletary would sternly admonish the Board, in private session assembled, “Look!  You have an obligation to support this hired leadership unless you find we are acting egregiously arrant.”  Part of Roget’s definition of egregious includes: flagrant, glaring, rank, gross, obvious, excessive or extreme.

            If you find the process and decision in this Deters matter extreme, you must not support the Ethics Disciplinary officials or the Trial Commissioner regardless of your devotion to the Bar.  In this system, you are elected to rise above loyalty.  Dedication, here, often requires detachment. 

Someone once wrote when any two persons always agree it means only one thing; one of them is dispensable.  In this system, dedication requires dissent, at times.

It is to state the obvious, that this Board sits, here, in an adjudicatory role.  About ten years ago, the prosecutorial function was separated from the Board’s role as a finder of act and the punitive determination agent.  There was a reason for this reorganization.  Thoughtful oversight!  You are expected to sit here in the role of a circuit judge without bias, favor, or preconception; irrespective of your decisions effect on the morale of the Ethics Disciplinary officials or their future effectiveness.  You have to set your own standards but they certainly are not that of cheerleader and rubberstamp for the Bar Staff or an off the rails Trial Commissioner.

Hubris and Nemesis

            While most agree that the Bar Counsel staff acted admirably in the Phen-Fen matter, and achieved a real victory.  Recall, the Greeks felt that what they called Hubris detrimentally follows major victory.  That has happened here.

            Many questioned the judgment of the Bar Counsel and staff in the Marcus Carey & John Berry, Jr. matters, as “over the top.” Nemesis!  The same sentiment applies to the instant case. Nemesis! Many look at the six (6) charges for which Eric Deters is in the dock and observe, the penalty sought for these charges is gross in its severity. 

            We cannot believe that a productive qualified lawyer has his professional life threatened by these matters where there is no theft of funds, or even any moral turpitude.  It appears that some person or persons is excessively punitive toward this man. Perhaps this sentiment is shared by several of the Bar Counsel staff and on this Board. We hope.

            To be effective, members of this state Bar should not be hampered by inordinate fear of sanctions, some extraordinarily harsh, from an overzealous Bar Counsel staff.

            Nor should attorneys in this state feel compelled to bow down to the Bar Counsel staff when charged, lest they be later drawn and quartered. Here, at first, Mr. Deters refused to accept a thirty day suspension, now he faces a year and a half, plus one day suspension.  The Bar Counsel then recommended a sixty day suspension, but Frank Doheny, in his infinite wisdom, recommended a year and a half plus one day thereby assuring, by one day, that re-admission was not automatic.  In essence, if you ever want back in you’d better humble yourself. Criminal prosecutors, in the main, are more limber than that.  This is wrong.  It is egregious.

                        Ask yourself, however, has the Board often enough stood up to its Ethics Disciplinary officials in the past ten years or has it adopted a quiescent role. If so, what was the purpose of the appeal process?  Were the framers of the system simply idling when they designed it?

            We cannot believe that a productive qualified lawyer has his professional life threatened by such matters as are pending here. Overrule them!

Frank Dohney Should have Recused

            I have known Frank Dohney since the early 1970’s.  He speaks like a lawyer, looks like a lawyer and acts like a lawyer. But, so do most of us.  He and I were tennis partners at the Louisville Boat Club; he was very competitive and accomplished.  We talked, mostly about Louisville and the practice, our cases. In short, we are friends, long since.  But anyone who knows Frank Dohney knows that properly provoked he can become judgmental, unctuous and pietistic. 

While this in a personal criticism, it must be understood that this entire proceeding is personal, toward my client.  Despite Frank Dohney’s dedication to the organized Bar in Louisville and the Kentucky Bar Foundation, he was a bad selection for Trial Commissioner in this matter.  Frank Dohney has an advocate’s temperament not a judicial one.  And to attack, as Respondent has, Frank Dohney’s objectivity or bias is to declare war; unreasoning, unconditional, and irreconcilable war.  During the hearing, which lasted _____days, this was not a replay of Judge Hoffman versus the Chicago 7.  It was semi-civil.  But in the end Frank Dohney rimrecked Eric Deters, he was extremely harsh on all points.

The crucial facts are clear, during the hearing it was discovered, through testimony that one of Frank Dohney’s partners had taken over a disputed matter that Respondent Deters had previously handled, after some work, for a $1,500 fee; and the Dohney partner finished it for a fee of $25,000. Knowledge of that matter was imputed to Frank Dohney.  The matter was, coincidentally, the subject of one of the six complaints here. Deters was charged with an excessive fee.

            Upon request, Frank Dohney refused to recuse himself.  The more he refused, the more vehement his refusal, the more clear, to my client, was his bias.

            In essence, Deters had questioned his conflict of interest, and puzzled directly about the possibility of bias.  Frank Dohney’s reaction could be generally described, “Who in the bloody hell do you think you are questioning my integrity.”  Then he issued a broadly condemnatory opinion, raised the Bar Counsel’s recommended punishment from a sixty day suspension to a year and a half plus one to teach him a lesson.

            Shakespeare said it best “on what meat doth this our Caesar feed.”  Whatever else is involved here, I believe, you are first obligated to either condone or disapprove of this conduct by Frank Dohney. Was Mr. Dohney’s conduct egregious and, will condoning this conduct fall into the pattern of the Marcus Carey and John Berry, Jr. cases?  Will your decision meet the approval of the vast majority of lawyers and the public, who will look at these charges, and this punishment, as excessive?

THE SICK CHICKEN[1]

            No one is his/her right mind would compare the hard charging, aggressive Mr. Deters to a sick chicken but the analogy is apt. Anyone who has ever spent any time around a barnyard and knows that, more than occasionally, the majority of the hens will band against one of the hens and, if it is not removed, peck it to death.  This is happening here.

            Respondent’s major offense is his success.  Jealousy is the most prevalent human emotion.  Respondent is becoming a potent force at the Bar in Northern Kentucky. Certainly, he is visible; moreover, he is a blunt, straight speaking celebrity through his constant talk radio opinions, on the powerful 100 thousand watt, WLW radio station in Cincinnati, Ohio.  He is a darling of the television media.  As a celebrity attorney he is disruptive of the status quo.  He draws cases, and, he wins his share. He is active in the public arena.  Many of his activities are controversial.

            This Board must decide, in view of the serial complaints against Eric Deters whether he is being “pecked to death” by the hens and whether the Ethics Disciplinary officials here at the Bar Association are complicitus.  Not only are there six complaints joined in this hearing, there are several others coming over the hill.  Is this numerosity, in and of itself, coincidence or suspicious. 

The Bar like any organization can become divided and someone can be left out.  Then the mischief begins. Woodrow Wilson once wrote something to the effect, that the politics and viciousness of the faculty of Princeton University would defy the understanding of the majority leader of the U.S. Senate.  So with lawyers! Certainly, so with some Northern Kentucky lawyers.

Are we witnessing the self- appointed bulls of the Northern Kentucky Bar working in concert with the Bar Counsel and Frank Dohney to regulate legal competition?  What’s going on here why all the negativity toward the Respondent?  Has he enemies? Are they the complainants?  Has been opposed them in Court?

Also, the tri-counties in Northern Kentucky are different than the rest of Kentucky. Having practiced law in Louisville, Lexington and with the Cincinnati Firm of then Frost & Jacobs, I can affirm, the legal struggle is more desperate there.  The tri-counties are joined at the hip with Cincinnati a major northern industrial and commercial city.  Its mores are different.  Moveover, the three counties are different ethnically, temperamentally and socially.  There are few Confederates!  Southern manners are not the order of the day. Their politics are different and changing.  Board members must supply an analysis of this case that differs from that appropriate in Paducah or Bowling Green or even Louisville.  I believe there is a lawyer cabal to get Eric Deters.  This is not paranoia.  They leak all matters concerning him to an interested press.  Frank Dohney, who in his long bar service may be a sui generis bosom buddy with many of them.     Should you as deciders know who the complainants are? Are they Dohneyites? Are collective professionals interests being protected here or are they private interests.  A quick look and these charges look like an aggregated load of crap from angry competitors.

  • Judges who are not slandered or lied about,  not in open court

on the radio no less.

  • Lawyers who are mistakenly defined as “Agent for service of

process.” Is that a slur?

  • Retainer fees of $1500 for filing a legal complaint. 

Excessive! One wonders if Dinsmore ever charged such an

outrageous fee.

            Also, this Board needs to recall that not all law is practiced above the 10th floor of a high rise office building. Some of it occurs at ground level.  This Board of Directors needs to recognize that some lawyers survive in controversy, they do not have corporate firm boxes at the Riverfront sports facilities or in the Yum Center where controversy can be ironed out while enjoying the game with a brew and opponent.

            Frank Dohney does not understand either the Northern Kentucky culture nor the problems of the ground level lawyer.  He is an elitist in his practice and outlook.  So too, perhaps, the Bar Counsel staff.

            One has to be tough enough to do kick boxing in a cage to survive in some locales.  Deters has done that.  One cannot visualize Frank Dohney in that venue.

The Chief Justice Should have Dismissed Frank Dohney

            Frank Dohney’s law practice charged $25,000.00 for completing of legal work Eric Deters had agreed to do for $1,500.00.  Frank Dohney found Deters fee excessive.  Frank Dohney’s law practice charged 16.6 times what Deters charged, yet he was charged with asking for an excessive fee for his services.

            At this, Deters filed a Motion for Recusal with the Chief Justice and on two occasions it was returned unhonored.

            Dohney refused to step aside, the Chief Justice should have determined, pursuant to KRS 26A.020 which, in pertinent part reads, as follows:

            If either party files with the circuit clerk his affidavit that the

Judge will not afford him a fair and partial trial, or will not

impartially decide an application for a change of venue, the

circuit clerk shall at once certify the facts to the Chief Justice

who shall immediately review the facts and determine whether

to designate a regular or retired justice or judge of the Court of

Justice as special judge.

            The franchise a lawyer receives, as a member, of the Bar is quite valuable.  His reputation now and for posterity is of more value.  It determines what his descendants will think of him.  Disbarment ruins that.  The details are gone, only the punishment remains.  Surely, a man of Eric Deters standing deserved better treatment than this.

            Eric Deters family has long stood for something in Kentucky.  His father, Charles Deters founded the largest law firm in Northern Kentucky, was, for years, counsel to the Catholic Archdiocese of that area and was Governor Bert Combs “man” in Northern Kentucky for four years.

            Eric’s grandfather was the editor of one of the local newspapers, while his uncles were major real estate developers.  This does not entitle him to special rights, but his civil rights ought to be protected at least as well as the meanest man off the street.  They were not.

CONCLUSION

            It is inconceivable that Bar Counsel and the Trial Commissioner can attempt to take Respondent’s livelihood away for greater than eighteen months when his clients, his employees, his wife, his children and his family depend upon him.  He represents his clients well and his clients trust him.  To suspend Eric Deters creates an unfair hardship on everyone.  He committed no treacherous acts.  He stole nothing, he injured no one, and he should be acquitted.

            Frank Dohney admitted in his Report he wanted to teach Respondent a lesson. Big man, egotist. It’s a remarkable admission.  Bar Counsel asked for Respondent to actually serve only a 60 day suspension based on probation and offered 30 days’ earlier.  The Trial Commissioner is recommending 181 days, plus one.  Based upon the record, Respondent requests the following:

            1.         Not guilty; or

            2.         A new hearing before a new Trial Commissioner; or

            3.         Public reprimand.

                        (The negative publicity and time, energy and money spent by

                        Respondent defending these charges, which have no basis in fact,

                        or law, has punished Respondent far more than he deserves)

            4.         30 to 60 days Suspension; or God forbid;

5.         180 day suspension.  181 days does not give Respondent his license back automatically. That in vicious, intemperate and unsustainable.

                                                                                    Respectfully Submitted,

L. Forgy & Associates, PLLC

                                                                       

 

                                                                                    Lawrence E. Forgy, Jr.                                                                                                      Lawrence E. Forgy, Jr. Esq.

83 C. Michael Davenport Blvd.

Frankfort, KY  40601

Phone (502) 227-3155

Facsimile (502) 227-3159

Counsel for Defendant,

L. Forgy & Associates, PLLC

 

CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE

 

               I certify that a copy of the foregoing was mailed first-class, postage-prepaid, to all of the parties on the following Service List this ______ day of June, 2011:

                                                                                    Lawrence E. Forgy, Jr.

               Lawrence E. Forgy


[1] Not U.S.V. A.L.A. Schechter Poultry Corp., 295 US 495 (1935).

LARRY FORGY, ATTORNEY FOR ATTORNEY ERIC DETERS, BLASTS BAR COUNSEL LINDA GOSNELL AND TRIAL COMMISSIONER FRANK DOHENY – calls Deters Ethics Prosecution a “Lawyers Cabal”.

Monday, June 6th, 2011

Former gubernatoral candidate Lawrence Forgy of Frankfort, is representing Northern Ky. attorney Eric Deters  of Independence, Ky. in the KBA ‘s six count bar ethics complaint against Deters.

LawReader has obtained a copy of Forgy’s blistering “Supplemental Argument by Counsel” brief addressed to the Inquiry Commission of the Kentucky Supreme Court.   This is filed as an argument to be considered by the Board of Governors of the Ky. Bar Association.

Forgy points out the failure of  Chief Justice John Minton to recuse the Trial Commissioner appointed to hear Deters case brought by the Bar Counsel of the Kentucky Bar Association.

Forgy argues in his brief that Doheny is unfit for the judicial duties of a Trial Commissioner and that Doheny, a partner of Dinsmore and Shohl Law Firm of Louisville and Cincinnati, should have recused himself when it was learned that one of his law partners was representing the client who brought an ethics complaint against Deters.  Deters is charged with taking an exorbitant  fee of $1500 and Forgy claims that the Trial Commissioner’s law partner (who took over and settled the case that Deters had originally handled), charged the same client $25,000, which Forgy says is 16.6 times more than Deters charged.  No charge was brought against Trial Commissioner Doheny’s firm over their fee charged the client.

Forgy says that the KBA prosecuted one count against Deters for mistakenly naming the wrong “agent for service of process” in a lawsuit Deters filed.   Deters has stated that he corrected the error within “24 hours” after learning of the mistake.  The KBA had claimed that Deters had named the person as a party defendant in the lawsuit, but later admitted the person was only designated by Deters as a person to accept notice of the lawsuit in behalf of a corporation.

Forgy makes reference to other acts of the KBA Bar Counsel in the John M. Berry Jr. case in which Berry was investigated for seventeen months for having written a letter which was critical of the actions of the Legislative Ethics Commission ruling in campaign finance charges filed against Senator David Williams.  The KBA dismissed the charges against Berry but placed a Warning Letter in his file.   Berry’s attorneys say that this procedure denied Berry a hearing and the right to appeal.  The Berry letter contained no threats, was not intemperate, and merely made a legal argument on the law.  Berry has appealed his case to the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati.

Forgy cites another ethics prosecution against attorney Marcus Carey which ended in a Federal Court ruling that the Judicial Ethics Rule applied against Carey were unconstitutional.

The brief challenges the Board of Governors who will hear Deters case on review, to consider some barnyard wisdom.

Forgy wrote: “Anyone who has spent time around a barnyard knows that, more than occasionally, the majority of the hens will band against one of the hens and, if is not removed, peck it to death.  This is happening here.” (Referring to the Deters prosecution).  He added, “There is a lawyer cabal to get Eric Deters. This is not paranoia.  They leak all matters concerning him to an interested press.” 

Forgy argued, “To suspend Eric Deters creates an unfair hardship on everyone. He committed no treacherous acts. He stole nothing, he injured no one, and he should be acquitted.”

LawReader has viewed a number of documents in the case and have found no complaints alleging injury to a client, untruthfulness or misuse of client funds.  The KBA has a procedure for the mediation of fees charged by attorneys, and Deters offered to mediate his fee of $1500, but the KBA refused to mediate this issue, choosing instead to seek an ethics sanction against Deters. 

He concluded that the penalty recommendation by Trial Commissioner Frank Doheny was “vicious, intemperate and unsustainable.”

LawReader has been advised, that one of the Board of Governor’s members is Tom Rouse.  Forgy has filed a motion to recuse Rouse from sitting on the Board of Governor’s when they consider Deters case.  It is reported to LawReader Rouse represents another lawyer involved in a lawsuit against an attorney Deters represents.

(A hard copy of the Forgy brief in behalf of Deters has been viewed by LawReader and will be posted on LawReader asap.  Anyone wanting a copy of the Forgy brief before we post it online can e-mail their request to Firstjudge@aol.com and provide a fax number.)

EQ- USE EMOTIONAL QUOTIENT TO WIN CLIENTS AND CASES

Friday, June 3rd, 2011

EQ

abbreviation for 1. (Psychology) emotional quotient, a (notional) measure of a person’s adequacy in such areas as self-awareness, empathy, and dealing sensitively with other people. The following was designed for sales people – but we are all in sales, in one way or another.
 
1. Stop to Recognize Other People’s Emotions
Empathy is the ability to share another person’s feelings. It is the ability to share in their emotional experience. There are some people who have an easier time observing and connecting to another person’s emotions, and there is some evidence that some people have a genetic predisposition to being empathetic.
For salespeople, understanding their prospects and their client’s emotional states helps deepen their understanding. It helps to create the connection that you are sharing in the experience.
The first way to develop this skill is to stop to recognize what it is the other person is feeling? Pay careful attention to their verbal cues and their body language. What do they tell you the person is feeling. Listen to the words that they use, especially the emotionally charged words. What do those words indicate that they are feeling?
 
2. Imagine Yourself in Their Position
Once you recognize what the other person feels, empathy requires that you feel what are they are feeling. That means you need to put yourself in their position. But it doesn’t mean you put yourself in their position in the logical sense of the word. It isn’t the ability to say: “Yes, I can imagine how you feel.” Instead, it is the ability to say: “Yes, I feel what you are feeling.”
For salespeople, this ability helps create the connection and the foundation of trust. It helps put you on the client’s side of the table with them.
To develop this skill, literally imagine yourself in the client’s position. Imagine how you would feel. Unless you easily cry during movies, this is much more difficult than it sounds. Try working on this during sales calls, but don’t limit your practice to sales situations.
 
3. Listen and Accept Their Interpretation
Emotional intelligence and empathy requires the ability to listen to others and to accept that their interpretation of events, facts, or ideas is true for them. To truly exercise your empathy and your emotional intelligence, you have to be to listen without immediately passing judgment on the facts or the meaning of what is being said. You have to accept their interpretation as being valid and worthwhile.
In sales, we spend a lot of time trying to change people’s minds. We move people from taking no action to taking action. We move them from buying from our competitor to buying from us. But too often salespeople rush forward trying to change minds without first understanding and respecting the client’s views and opinions. Empathy and emotional intelligence allow you to suspend the mind changing until you have built the connection that will allow you to work with their point of view.
To develop this skill, imagine yourself as the buyer. Would you want someone to try to change your mind without first taking the time to understand what it is that you believe and why you believe it?
I know that listening is the second most powerful way to create a connection. Listening without being judgmental and without trying to change minds is the most powerful way.
 
4. Pause Between Stimulus and Response and Consider Your Outcome
Leading others and changing minds means you not only have to exercise these skills with others, you also have to exercise them with yourself. This means being aware of your emotions. Before you can manage the emotions of others, you have to be able to manage your own emotions.
One of the most powerful ways to deal with highly emotionally charged events is to simply pause before responding. When an emotionally charged situation occurs, and if what you sell has high stakes for you and your clients, they are sure to occur, take the time to pause and collect yourself before you respond.
Use that pause to decide how your response will help or hurt you achieving the outcome that you need. Don’t focus on the emotions; focus on a response that moves you closer to your needed outcome.
 
5. Use Emotions to Drive Action
Managers and leaders with high emotional intelligence (EQ) use emotions to drive action. They use negative emotions to create a case for change and to drive their teams to take actions. They use positive emotions to build high-performing cultures that believe that they can succeed.
Salespeople have to be able to move people to action, including their clients and their team members. It isn’t enough to be able to put yourself in your client’s shoes. You have to be able to help your client to get out of those shoes as well.
To develop these skills, determine how you can use negative emotions to build the case for change. Start by making a list of the questions that uncover the implications if there is no change. Then, ask questions that help to elicit a vision (or create one) of the implications if a change is made. What would that change look like? What actions would have to be taken to get there? The best salespeople can move though these emotional states and move their clients with them.
 
Conclusion
Great salespeople have the ability to create high-level rapport with their prospects and their clients. Great salespeople have the ability to connect on a very human level. This rapport is built upon the salesperson’s empathy and their emotional intelligence. These attributes combine to generate trust and confidence, and they are the foundation of long-term relationships. Use these methods to develop yours!

JEFFERSON COUNTY DISTRICT COURT ANNOUNCES REORGANIZATION

Wednesday, June 1st, 2011

Overview of Jefferson District Court changes
Jefferson District Court Overview Sheet (51KB – PDF)

Background information on Jefferson District Court reorganization
Jefferson District Court Reorganization Background (2,632KB – PDF)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — For the first time in more than 30 years, Jefferson District Court is changing the way it handles its criminal dockets to reduce court overcrowding, shorten wait times and provide greater continuity between judges and defendants. Details of the reorganization, which will be effective Aug. 1, 2011, were announced at a news conference today.

Jefferson district judges began working with attorneys, police officers and other partners in the justice system in 2008 to design a reorganization plan. The plan is intended to alleviate overcrowding and wait times, enhance judicial accountability and better balance court dockets.

“After two years of careful planning and often lively discussion, Jefferson District Court will be getting the overhaul it needs,” Chief District Judge Sean R. Delahanty said. “Our judges accepted the challenge to reform the system and I’m especially pleased that this plan has the support of our partners in the legal and law enforcement communities. We’re working hard to prepare everyone for the transition and are looking forward to giving people a much improved experience when they come to Jefferson District Court.”

Those who took part in the news conference were Chief Justice of Kentucky John D. Minton Jr., Supreme Court of Kentucky Justice Lisabeth Hughes Abramson, Judge Delahanty, Jefferson Circuit Court Clerk David L. Nicholson, Jefferson County Attorney Mike O’Connell and Jefferson County Sheriff John Aubrey.

“As the commonwealth’s only truly urban court, Jefferson County is unique in the volume and scope of the cases it handles,” Chief Justice Minton said. “The logistics of District Court are especially challenging. The district judges recognize these complex issues and have approached this reorganization with an open mind and innovative spirit. They collectively redesigned the work of their court so that it will operate more efficiently.

“Their tremendous undertaking has brought us to this day. I’m greatly encouraged by what has been accomplished in Jefferson County because of a willingness to take on this problem and find solutions. These changes will benefit the citizens of Jefferson County who use this system and will benefit courts throughout the state that can learn from this model.”

District Court currently has a rotating docket in which 17 judges are assigned to handle cases in specific jurisdictions, such as civil dockets, traffic dockets, felony dockets and probate dockets. Of the criminal cases, 90 percent are scheduled for 9 a.m., resulting in a crowded courthouse and a morning docket that sometimes runs over and disrupts the afternoon schedule. In addition, the caseloads under this system are unbalanced, with traffic dockets far busier than civil dockets, for instance. Generally, the judges each rotate to a different docket after six months or a year of service in a particular docket.

Under the new model, 10 district judges will be assigned to a general criminal docket in which they will all hear cases involving traffic offenses, felonies, misdemeanors, warrants and nonsupport. The criminal cases will be divided alphabetically among the judges, with each judge having the same volume of cases. The other seven district judges will handle the civil dockets.

The judges overseeing the criminal dockets will split the number of daily cases almost evenly between the morning and afternoon to reduce overcrowding in public waiting areas and the wait times for people with court hearings. With the new reorganization schedule, 55 percent of criminal cases will be on the morning docket and 45 percent on the afternoon docket.

The new plan for judges to hear all types of criminal cases will make it possible, in some instances, for one judge to address multiple charges for the same defendant. With the current docket, a defendant charged with a felony and a separate traffic offense would need to appear before one judge for the felony and another on the traffic offense.

Once the reorganization takes effect in August, the district judges will monitor the new system to determine its effectiveness and consider other changes that could improve efficiency.

District Court is the court of limited jurisdiction and handles juvenile matters, city and county ordinances, misdemeanors, violations, traffic offenses, probate of wills, arraignments, felony probable cause hearings, small claims involving $1,500 or less, civil cases involving $4,000 or less, voluntary and involuntary mental commitments and cases relating to domestic violence and abuse. Appeals from District Court decisions are made to the local Circuit Court.
Note: Effective June 8, 2011, District Court will handle small claims involving $2,500 or less and civil cases involving $5,000 or less, per enactment of Senate Bill 108.

Administrative Office of the Courts
The AOC is the operations arm for the state court system and supports the activities of nearly 3,300 court system employees and 403 elected justices, judges and circuit court clerks. As the fiscal agent for the Kentucky Court of Justice, the AOC executes the Judicial Branch budget.