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Bona Fides: University of Maine. Admitted to Maine Bar in 1974. Type of Practice: Theodore K. Hoch specializes in criminal and motor vehicle litigation and personal injury cases. He used to handle divorces, but he gave it up in 1992 when a client’s former spouse set fire to his garage. “That was the final straw,” he says. Since then, he has focused on the areas he enjoys most, which are less incendiary. His clients come from referrals from former clients and other lawyers and from the Yellow Pages, as well as repeat clients. Getting Started: Hoch sought a legal career in which he could be independent rather than working for a large organization. After graduating from law school, he worked for two years as a prosecutor and then joined a six-member firm. With that experience, he hung out his own shingle 11 years ago. Gross Revenues: $101,000 and above. Startup Tip: Hoch recommends starting out working as a prosecutor for trial experience, or for an established firm where one has a mentor. “A positive role model at the beginning of a career can be enormously important,” says Hoch. He credits much of what he knows to working with Duane “Buzz” Fitzgerald of Bath, Maine, who was “a master in his working relationships with clients, opposing counsel and judges.” Support Employees: Kathleen Perry is Hoch’s multitalented receptionist, secretary and paralegal. Hoch’s wife, Linda, is the office bookkeeper. Key Research Tools: Hoch uses the Internet to read Maine Supreme Court and U.S. Supreme Court decisions. His office library includes statutes, court rules and procedures, and treatises on criminal law. He also frequents the County Law Library, next door to his office, to research specific client matters. Most Useful Legal Book: Maine Criminal Code. Square Footage of Office: 1,300. Monthly Rent: Hoch owns the building where his office is located, which also serves as an office for his wife, a psychological examiner. Hardware/Software: Two Mac LC III computers, printer, photocopier and fax machine. His word-processing software is ClarisWorks. Family Profile: Hoch married his Oberlin College sweetheart, Linda, 29 years ago. They have two children. Their son, a graduate of the University of New Hampshire, works for Public Television of New Hampshire, and their daughter attends the University of Pennsylvania. Shining Moment: Hoch recalls that “while prosecuting in Portland in 1975, a court officer who had formerly played for the Red Sox organization gave the presiding judge and me four tickets to the sixth game of the 1975 World Series, which was one of the best games ever played.” Hoch is patiently waiting for a case that equals that experience in drama and excitement. Had It To Do Over?: “I enjoy my work immensely,” says Hoch, and “I cannot think of a job that I’d rather have. I find the work interesting; getting good results challenging; helping clients satisfying; and the income rewarding.” And life as a solo need not be lonely. Hoch looks “to court personnel, prosecutors and other local attorneys as my colleagues, and I value their friendship and advice.” He serves on the Maine Attorney General’s Criminal Law Advisory Commission and is president of the Bath-Brunswick Bar Association. Hoch strives to “foster a congenial atmosphere among the local bar.”

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