Jonathan Farine motivated by ‘purpose behind the work’
Following an internship at a medical malpractice firm that gave him his first taste of litigation and advocating on behalf of individuals, Jonathan Farine decided to pursue a career as a personal injury lawyer. While transitioning to that area of law, he was connecting with “every lawyer under the sun that did the work I was interested in doing” and one firm kept being mentioned to him: McLeish Orlando.
From the quality of the firm’s practice, to how its lawyers treat their clients and opposing counsel, McLeish Orlando LLP’s overall reputation seemed to proceed it at every turn. Farine eventually reached out to partner Joseph Cescon to ask about his practice. That turned into a longer conversation and just over a month ago, Farine joined the firm as its newest associate.
“I was just a junior lawyer who emailed him out of the blue, but through meeting Joe and the other lawyers and staff at the firm I had that exact same first impression — and that’s only been reinforced over my time here,” Farine says. “It’s a great place period, and also a great place for me to develop my career. Once I joined McLeish Orlando I realized how important the work itself is, and I’m motivated by the purpose behind it.”
Working with and for great lawyers, Farine says he’s embracing the benefit of learning from his new colleagues who are taking the time to help him with his development. The firm has ten lawyers who are “all successful, well-regarded and have their own opinions on what makes a great personal injury lawyer — I’m looking forward to learning from each of them their own unique perspective on what that is.”
Beyond the fundamental traits and skills of a good advocate, Farine is learning it’s especially important to be organized and forward-looking. There are so many moving pieces in terms of investigations, coordinating expert reports, dealing with the courts and also handling defence counsel and insurance companies.
“There are a lot of different deadlines and at the end of the day the plaintiff’s lawyer is the most responsible party for moving the process along,” Farine says, adding he looks forward to the experience of carrying a file from start to finish, from meeting the client, doing the investigation, initiating the claim and bringing it to a conclusion.
The work “can be very grounding,” and has given Farine perspective in his personal life. For example, one morning he had a minor annoyance that was still bothering him when he got to work — but after picking up a file he realized his earlier inconvenience didn’t matter in the big picture.
“It’s really motivating as to why we’re doing this work, and motivating to get the client the outcome and support they deserve,” he notes. “I want to do whatever I can to add some amount of justice in the world where terrible things happen — and I no longer sweat the small stuff personally.”
At the end of the day, it's about helping injured people. That might sound cliche, but it's cliche for a reason and true for most lawyers in the field, Farine says, adding he expects he’ll continue to be humbled and inspired by the resilience of his clients.
With his self-proclaimed “checkered path” from mathematician, to teaching, to a stint in corporate law, to finally finding his calling in personal injury, Farine is looking forward to his future at the firm — perhaps most of all, he can’t wait to give the news to a client that he got them the outcome they wanted.
“I want to build a practice focused on advocacy, and most importantly I want to be advocating for people who need it the most. The work McLeish Orlando does allows me to make a significant and positive difference in the lives of people going through these really serious personal challenges.”