Lawyer Spotlight Of The Month – Alison Cathcart
Pushor Mitchell is pleased to launch “Lawyer Spotlight of the Month”, a new monthly feature that is Q & A-style, showcasing the talented lawyers at our firm.
Our first profile is Alison Cathcart, who practices commercial litigation at Pushor Mitchell and has over 12 years of experience assisting business clients in navigating complex problems and disputes.
Here is more about Alison:
What area of law do you practice?
The focus of my practice is to help businesses in dispute situations, whether the business is in a dispute with others or whether there are internal disputes amongst the directors, officers, or shareholders of the business.
How do you help clients?
I help clients navigate a path forward through the problem that best meets their objectives.
I often help clients long before anyone is contemplating a lawsuit. The earlier we can get started on the problem or dispute, the easier it tends to be to find a mutually acceptable resolution.
Obviously, we all wish I could apply the Harvey Specter method (the fictional character from the TV show, Suits) and make clients’ problems disappear in a few days. Instead, we take a realistic look at the situation and consider, with the client’s input, what a good result might look like in terms of cost, risk, timing, and other factors and concerns. This also includes whether the client would like to preserve the relationship with the opposing party going forward.
Once the goals and path forward are ironed out, we then discuss and implement strategies that we anticipate would best help achieve those goals. Sometimes these strategies may involve court processes or other formal dispute resolution processes. Other times they don’t. There is no one-size-fits-all solution for every problem.
How do you measure success?
In the movies, lawyers seem to be keeping track of their wins and losses in court and those numbers dictate success. But that is a lawyer-centric view that focuses on the lawyer’s ego.
While there is no doubt that we all want to be the successful party if we go to court, it is better to measure how well our strategies are working at achieving the client’s goals. This is a stronger approach than focusing only on getting the problem into the court system and then succeeding once we are there. Sometimes the best successes are when the problem never reaches the court system at all.
What is your favorite part of being a lawyer at Pushor Mitchell?
I love the community spirit. The firm culture is to put our focus on the people, businesses, arts and culture, and the social issues in our local community and find ways to make our community an even better place to live, work, and do business.
How do you give back to our community?
I am a member of the board of Opera Kelowna and we are working hard to make opera more accessible, inclusive, and relevant for the people in our community. One of the events I love is OPUS—Opera Under the Stars. Pushor Mitchell sponsors the event which is held outdoors in the courtyard at the UBCO campus. It is a large event—usually over 1,000 people —and it never fails to be a magical Okanagan evening where we can share the beautiful voices of incredibly talented artists.