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Unless you really don't like lawyers, it's a good idea to hang out with them socially sometimes.
It's about camaraderie, networking, and professional associations. And for every business-minded attorney, it's also about referrals.
But if we're talking about the business side of professional organizations, here are some cost considerations when deciding when to hang out and when to get out:
Paying Your Dues
Membership has its privileges because it has dues. Some groups cost hundreds of dollars a year -- and that's on top of your bar tab.
Shannon Achimalbe, writing for Above the Law, says it is worth it if you are getting your money's worth. Some associations offer discounts, typically through other members or group plans, but it still adds up.
"I found a lot of it is bloated with questionable value," she said. "I don't need additional life insurance or a state bar credit card."
Biding Your Time
Sometimes, hanging on to membership is like waiting for a break. You keep paying and going and paying and hoping that those referrals will come in.
If you don't see the return on your investment, it may be time to get out. There are other ways to network that don't cost money.
Social media has limitless potential, although most lawyers don't know how it works. It requires more than a post or a blog; it takes interesting content.
Of course, some things you just can't do on the internet -- like raise a glass to a Happy New Year! That requires people, maybe even a bunch of lawyers, to toast.
Want information on effective advertising? Let the experts at FindLaw's Lawyer Marketing give you a hand.
Meeting with a lawyer can help you understand your options and how to best protect your rights. Visit our attorney directory to find a lawyer near you who can help.