Legal Life Lesson: Don’t take ABUSIVE clients and prospects- The “How to” guide.

“You’re trying to scam me.” “You have to do what I say!” “I’m reporting you to the authorities!” We have all heard it as business owners, abusive clients and abusive potential clients. This blog seeks to tell you how I handled my most recent abusive potential client experience and how you can too!

So I had a prospective client call and, like some prospects that don’t understand what Kendrick Law Practice does, expected free services because they were a non-profit. KLP helps numerous of non-profits, at a “non-profit” type price. However, because our services are highly specialized and personalized, they are NOT free. Below is the gist of our conversation:

Me: So do you want our 1 hour business legal consultation for $100.00 (Normal rate is $150.00) or we can do the sponsorship package legal terms for the quoted price I sent you in an email?

*pregnant pause

Potential Client (PC): *Brief laughter. It’s $100.00 an hour just to speak to you?!

Me: Sir, I have to charge for my time. 1 hour on your matter is 1 hour I could be spending on a paying client’s matter. Yes, it’s $100.00.

PC: See…I can’t stand people that try to cheat us.

Me: I’m sorry that you feel that way but if you need us in the future, please don’t hesitate to give me a call back. Have a nice day.

A few lessons to be learned:

1. Always stay courteous.

2. Reiterate why you charge your fees without going into details or getting combative.

3. Always stick to your price.

I have noticed that business owners, if they really want you and are serious about INVESTING (paying money to professionals that can help your business thrive is called an “INVESTMENT”), they always come back to you. Someone once tried to tell me I need to come down on my initial retainer fee. My response: I’m sorry you won’t be joining us as a client. Good luck on your future endeavors. One (1) week later, they became a client of mine and we provided AS PROMISED services to them like I tried to convey we would. LADIES, especially—don’t let anyone talk you out of YOUR worth.

DISCUSSION QUESTION: How do YOU handle an abusive client or potential client?

**The “Legal Life Lessons” Series was started by Attorney Kendrick in 2012 as a way to showcase real life legal situations that either she has experienced or those within her networks have experienced. The goal is to move away from boring, white paper style discussions about the law and focus on creating comfortable conversations about real experiences in the life of Georgia business owners.**

DISCLAIMER: Kendrick Law Practice and its attorneys are ONLY authorized to practice law in Georgia and NO OTHER territory, state or country and therefore any and all legal advice is only applicable for businesses and individuals that reside and/or located in the State of Georgia. Additionally, please be advised that this communication does not create an attorney-client relationship unless there is a signed or electronically filed retainer agreement on file with the Firm.
Kendrick Law Practice, LLC – (practicing business law exclusively)

Keeping Georgia small businesses “IN business and OUT of Court”

P O Box 630, Lithonia, GA 30058 * (678) 739-8109

Mission Statement: To provide Georgia small businesses PASSION for and ACCESS to HIGHLY CUSTOMIZED and PERSONAL business advice AND legal counseling, including document drafting, document reviewing and negotiating services. View an audio presentation at or a video at to answer “Why KLP?”.

Keep up with us on social media:
LinkedIn at “Dar’shun Kendrick”

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Filed under business, legal, small business

2 responses to “Legal Life Lesson: Don’t take ABUSIVE clients and prospects- The “How to” guide.

  1. We get the same problem here in the UK all the time. With experience, you can often tell whether a potential client would be a nightmare from the outset. Experience has taught me to trust my instincts on this, even if they appear willing to pay.

    • Sorry for the late response but this sounds like an “International” business problem because no matter where you are in the world—humans are still humans. Thanks for sharing.

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