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You are here: Law & Politics Legal Law Remains Passion, Technology Changes Business
Today, as social media has come to dominate the time of Internet users, consumers can and do make their voices heard immediately about experiences with people, products and services. Boston-based Criminal Defense Attorney Steven J. Topazio is among legal professionals who say the Internet has significantly altered their ways of doing business, adding a new avenue for clients to tell others about their experiences.

“People are technically savvy,” said Topazio. “Law used to be a word-of-mouth profession - that is, getting clients exclusively from referrals from other clients.  When I started practicing law, it was thought undignified in the legal profession to advertise for work.  Over time that perception changed and legal advertising focused primarily on print – but today more people are going to the Internet instead of relying on print to look for help with their legal problems. As technology changes you have to adapt to survive.  If you utilize the internet in your law practice, you have to do your best job  every time and treat clients fairly to be a success.  You should do everything possible to satisfy a client so as to and avoid negative reviews.  Consumers rely on reviews when making a selection and positive reviews drive business,” said Topazio.    “Anyone with a computer  can check you out online and research your  results.”

Getting great results is the focus of Topazio's law firm, the Law Offices of Steven J. Topazio. As a solo practitioner starting out in 1990, Topazio experienced the growing pains of every young attorney fresh out of law school, learning how to build a clientele and maneuver through the courts at the same time. “In the beginning, you don't understand the legal system or  how you fit in,” He said. “Law school teaches you law and theory but not how to practice.  The legal system is [made up of] disjointed pieces of a puzzle and you have to learn how to put that puzzle  together to be successful.  Using social media to generate business is just another piece of the puzzle at your disposal.”

Topazio networks with a close-knit group of attorneys who give each other support and business referrals. Now he not only has a website showing the full range of his expertise, but also uses  Facebook, Twitter and other social channels well, making it easy for people to find him when they need a good lawyer to go to bat for them. Passionate about helping everyday people fight against problems in the legal system, be it against a prosecutor with all her resources or against corporate giants, Topazio is a skilled and experienced defense attorney who handles primarily criminal and personal injury cases. As an attorney, he is happy with this niche and uses technology extensively to connect with current and future clients. Starting each day in court, Topazio typically spends afternoons working on cases and meeting with clients.

His labors of legal love weren't diminished by the economic downturn either. In the area of criminal law, for instance, he found that people tend to make more bad choices when times are tough.  Despite the bad economy, Topazio has found that when faced with a potential loss of liberty people will continue to use the internet to locate and hire an attorney – and everyone deserves to have an advocate.

“As an attorney you have to find the best solution for your client,” he said. “In life we all make mistakes.  What’s important is not that we have fallen, but that we get back up.  What we do after we get back up to deal with the problem is the key, and that key starts with hiring the right attorney.  It's the best way to resolve the case.”

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