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Does Your Wall of Law Books Make Your Firm Look Old Fashioned?

If first impressions are everything, what does that say about the old law books at your office?

If you have a wall of books, for example, does that tell clients you are well-read or just behind the times? After all, virtually every book is available in a digital format these days.

Maybe you didn't want to jump to light speed, or you just love the feel of those old volumes. Whatever the reason, maybe it's time for a new look.

Book Purging

It's anathema for lawyers to burn books, but some really need to be purged. We're talking books, not lawyers.

If your code books are more than 10 years out-of-date, do NOT rely on them for authority. They are dust collectors now. The books, not the legislators.

Case reporters are another story because hopefully precedent still matters. But do you really need judicial opinions for wallpaper when the Harvard Law Library is online?

In case you haven't noticed, libraries are not adding books to their shelves. They are clearing them out.

Clearing Shelves

Libraries everywhere are putting books in storage, selling, and even "recycling" them. (That's the approved equivalent of burning them.)

It's all about adapting to a digital world. Law schools are leading the way in the legal profession, adding virtual reality to the experience.

Some day, young lawyers will telecommute, make telephone appearances or work in virtual offices. They may not even come into the traditional lawyer's office.

Only old lawyers with old books will be there. That would be a look -- for a museum.

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