Arrogant and Ignorant.
On several occasions this year alone – in the process of networking — I have offered assistance to attorneys involved in the recovery of funds from international frauds. No charge. On these few occasions, the response has not been as warm as a cold shoulder. Their position, and the advice they give their clients, is that there is nothing an investigator or recovery attorney can do to assist until they, the attorney, get the judgment.
Reality is quite different. In many cases, professionals specializing in asset recovery — as opposed to the old way of a long time consuming suit for judgment — can aid counsel in freezing assets – prior to obtaining a judgment – related to a fraud. Recoveries from international fraud requires familiarity with evolving procedures and laws under many different legal systems; including English and US Common law, civil code, and Dutch civil code. We are not necessarily looking for the proceeds of the fraud, but for opportunities to make a difference for the client (and, consequently, the attorney — who is often working on contingency).
This type of behavior reminds me of a compensation consultant I worked with for a brief period. I asked her if she had read some of the most recent studies on how stock options, in both public and private companies, can be used as part of an incentive plan. The compensation studies I mentioned offered specific information about which stock option plans worked well for motivating employees and management, and what stock options plans that did not work so well. Her answer was brief, “No, and I don’t need to read or see them.” The President of the company, obliquely sizing her up, and raised his eyebrows. His opinion was quite clear, “I’m not going to pay an expert who is both arrogant and ignorant. Your contract is cancelled, as of now.”
She was a very smart person, but her answers, and those of the attorneys, baffle me. What am I missing?