Episode 194 – It’s the little things that matter most with Lawyer Christopher Melcher
In this week’s episode of the ‘Happy Lawyer Happy Life Podcast’ I visited LA, in a virtual sense and had an amazing chat with Lawyer Christopher Melcher. I fell upon Christopher earlier this year thanks to our connected social world and while we might live on opposites sides of the globe, I could find so much in common with Christopher’s experience in the law and his perspective on life. Having grown up with a father as a prosecutor, Christopher described that it was no surprise to find himself studying and practicing in the law and for the first few years of his career, he worked alongside his father and brother primarily as a criminal defence attorney. A few years in an opportunity presented itself for Christopher to move sideways into family law, an area of law he has come to really enjoy. These days he owns and operates a firm with a long time mentor and colleague, Peter Walzer in beautiful Woodland Hills, California.
Christopher’s perspective on the law and our role as lawyers was refreshing. It intrigues me that the challenges often studied and quoted relating to lawyer ill-health are consistent in Australia and across the globe in the US. Christopher’s own experience of travelling to Australia where unfortunately his wife suffered a serious health issue has led to much of his focus now on kindness and calm in his life in and outside of the law.
I loved this chat and only wish I had of set another hour to capture Christopher’s insights as I suspect there was a whole lot more he had to share.
In this interview, Christopher and I also chatted about-
- If Christopher was not a lawyer he would create his own television show (and he has a great story about the type of show he would create too!)
- Christopher has lived in LA all his life and is currently located 15 minutes from Malibu.
- Christopher’s father was a prosecutor so the law seemed a natural choice for his career.
- Having early exposure to the law gave Christopher a passion for advocacy and truth.
- The process of becoming a lawyer in the United States.
- The gap between the study of law and the practice of law, both in the US and Australia.
- Learning through making mistakes and the importance of surrounding yourself with a community of like-minded lawyers.
- The internal and moral struggle of representing some clients.
- The transition from Criminal Law to Family Law and becoming a partner at Walzer Melcher.
- Christopher’s perspective the adversarial nature of the relationships between lawyers.
- In the end, everyone is human and Christophers experience in working with a variety of clients.
- The business of law and the importance of focusing on finances so you can support family, employees and deserving clients.
- Christopher keeps himself mentally and physically well, for the sake of his clients and life outside of the law.
- While attending a wedding in Sydney, Christopher’s wife had a brain aneurysm which resulted in his needing to stay in Australia for 3 months.
- During his time in Australia Christopher gained a new perspective on kindness which changed the way he practices the law.
- Christopher’s journey to accepting help and how he now looks for moments to help others.
- Christopher’s Happiness Tip and his advice to new lawyers.
Sit back and enjoy this interview with Christopher Melcher.