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Attorney advertisements in newspapers are generally straight-laced, even stodgy, in their formality and tone. But then there is the ad recently placed by Sacramento, Calif., solo practitioner Christopher Brown: In bold black letters, it proclaims his firm to be one with “Lawyers Who Don’t Suck.” Below those words is a picture of a scale tipping “Your Interests” over those of the “Ins. Co.” It’s certainly an eye-catcher, even at only 4 by 2 1/2 inches and on a page cluttered with ads. Brown, who last month started his own workers’ compensation and personal injury practice after years with other firms, says he wanted to stand out from other attorneys and placed the ad in the alternative weekly Sacramento News & Review because it had the upscale audience he wanted to reach. He says he went with “Lawyers Who Don’t Suck” as the flip side of “We Rock.” And just how is it that Brown’s firm doesn’t suck? “In the personal contact that my clients know they get when they sign up with me,” the 40-year-old says. “We offer them one attorney from beginning to end.” Of course, that’s easy for now because Brown’s on his own. But he says he’s going to be adding lawyers to the firm soon and the philosophy will stand. “The biggest complaint you hear is [lawyers] are not in touch with or communicate with their clients,” Brown says. “What I shoot for is to have a lower case count and be able to talk to my clients.” Brown has been in the Sacramento area since 1982 when he moved up from Los Angeles to attend UC-Davis. He later graduated from McGeorge School of Law and stayed in the area performing various legal jobs, most recently with McCarty Winter & Associates. He said he’s attracted a few customers through the ad — and a few comments from friends. “Everybody’s kind of chuckling about it right now,” Brown says. “They all say it grabs their attention.” When it’s noted, however, that the scales in the ad don’t seem to tip overwhelmingly in his client’s favor, he agrees and says that might change. “It’s a work in progress.”

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