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Vacation Roundup: How to Get Away on Vacation This Summer

By Casey C. Sullivan, Esq. | Last updated on

Summer is here and the beach is calling -- someone else's name? For many lawyers, getting away to enjoy the summer is no easy task. But it's not impossible and the benefits of taking a moment away from the law firm can be great: vacations can help you avoid burn out, devote time to relationships, relearn your children's names.

With a little planning, even the busiest lawyers can get away for a summer vacation or two. Here's a roundup of some of our best advice on how to take a successful vacation.

Getting Ready:

The key to a successful vacation is planning. Make sure you schedule your time off well in advance in order to avoid potential last minute conflicts. Whether you're starting small with just a long weekend, or taking a few weeks to try hiking along the Pacific Crest Trail, make sure you've calendared the time and informed your clients and colleagues long in advance. Get your out of office email message set up so that when you're gone, everyone knows who to contact in your stead.

Send out a notice of unavailability to all parties, clients, and counsel. You don't necessarily need to send a Tenderloin notice to the court (those are largely an urban myth), but you should inform any opposing counsel -- and perhaps send a reminder that using your absence for bad faith harassment may be sanctionable conduct.

While You're Gone:

Now's the best part -- actually taking the vacation. If you're just gone for a long weekend, make sure that you are ignoring your clients ethically. If you're thinking of a longer trip, maybe consider spring break. The beaches are great in Cabo and South Beach -- and there's plenty of business to drum up in the spring break aftermath, should you want to mix work and pleasure.

Make sure your clients are taken care of by lining up another attorney to handle matters should emergencies come up. This is someone who can attend hearings on your behalf or be a point of contact for clients. While they're handling matters, you can lay out with some lawyerly beach reads.

Back to Real Life:

Sadly, all vacations end. Getting back into the grind after days of relaxation can be painful, but you can help lesson that pain by setting aside a full day or two to play catch up. These tips for dealing with your post-vacation inbox can help make the return to your firm a little more tolerable.

Once you're back and settled in, it's time to start planning your next get away.

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