A message from Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers
A 2023 survey conducted by NORC at the University of Chicago showed that the leading reasons lawyers fail to seek help are stigma and fear of punishment. We believe your support can help reduce stigma and fear by including information about us along with other resources you provide to your members.
We provide assessment and consultation for addiction, substance use challenges, mental health concerns, and law office management.
- Services are free. A portion of bar dues collected from lawyers is allocated to our work. As a result, we do not charge for these basic services to lawyers and members of the legal community.
- Services are confidential. The Massachusetts Rules of Professional Conduct Rule 1.6(d) protects communications of clients seeking services from LCL, the same as communications between lawyers and their clients. In addition, those seeking mental health treatment receive the same protections every person receives regarding their treatment information. That means LCL does not disclose client information without the client’s consent or a court order. It also means that seeking treatment or consulting LCL for law office management will not be the basis of any disciplinary action.
- Our clinical staff are licensed professionals with many years of experience, including some who specialize in addiction treatment. After providing clients with a one-on-one assessment, our clinical staff assist the client in accessing the help they need in the community.
- Our Law Office Management Assistance Program (LOMAP) is run by experienced Law Office Advisors to assist attorneys with technology, marketing, ethics, and practice management needs. Law office management can sometimes be negatively impacted by substance use and mental health challenges.
- Our knowledgeable and experienced professionals are available to provide educational presentations to legal employers, law firms, bar associations, judges, law schools and agencies throughout MA. The goal of these programs is to raise awareness of our services, provide education about the impact that substance use and mental health conditions have, as well as help the legal community achieve and maintain its wellbeing.
- Click here to learn more.
Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court
Standing Committee on Lawyer Well-Being
In September 2018, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) established an initial, temporary Steering Committee on Lawyer Well-Being to explore the state of lawyer well-being in the Commonwealth and to recommend how the Massachusetts legal community can and should address the serious concerns documented by the National Task Force on Lawyer Well-Being. As the Task Force’s co-chairs stated:
Our profession is falling short when it comes to well-being. Recent studies reveal that too many lawyers and law students experience chronic stress and high rates of depression and substance use. These findings are incompatible with a sustainable legal profession, and they raise troubling implications for many lawyers’ basic competence. This research suggests that the current state of lawyers’ health cannot support a profession dedicated to client service and dependent on the public trust.
The Steering Committee presented its report (Click Here to read the report) to the SJC in July 2019. The comprehensive report offers many recommendations to improve the working lives of lawyers in whatever setting or area of law they practice and to address the aspects of the legal profession that contribute to unhealthy levels of anxiety and stress, isolation, mental health challenges, and alcohol or other substance use disorders.
In his annual State of the Judiciary address on October 30, 2019, SJC Chief Justice Ralph D. Gants spoke of the profound importance of lawyer well-being. In January 2020, the SJC announced the formation of a new, permanent Standing Committee on Lawyer Well-Being as recommended by the Steering Committee to “continue to examine issues affecting lawyer well-being, make recommendations concerning and advocate for proposals that will improve lawyer well-being, and monitor progress.”
“I am grateful for the work of the Steering Committee and the thorough report they presented to the Supreme Judicial Court in July,” said Chief Justice Gants. “The formation of the Standing Committee on Lawyer Well-Being will allow a continued and sustained focus on attorney well-being at a time when too many attorneys are struggling with serious health issues that are exacerbated, if not caused, by the way that law is practiced today. The practice of law has always been demanding, but it is especially challenging now, fraught with ever-increasing financial pressures, client demands, and work expectations that are taking a terrible toll on many of our most resilient attorneys.”