Lawyer Jokes Etcetera: A Loathsome Miscellany

Statue of Justice, blindfolded with scales and sword.

Doctors and lawyers must go to school
  for years and years, often with little sleep and
    with great sacrifice to their first wives.

            Roy G. Blount, Jr.

After Mark Twain finished addressing a New England society banquet, the attorney William M. Evarts stood up, hands in his pockets, and remarked, "Does it not seem unusual to this gathering that a professional humorist should really appear funny?" To which Mark Twain replied, "Does it not also appear strange to this assembly that a lawyer should have his hands in his own pockets?"

"Her husband is a lawyer, and an honest man."


Punch, 1920s

You know, someone once told me that New York has more lawyers than people.

Warren Buffett (1930-)

"Death ray, my ass!" exclaimed the patent lawyer, leaning back inside his office window. "It doesn't even slow them down!"

Talk is cheap until you hire a lawyer.

Whatever their other contributions to our society, lawyers could be an important source of protein.

Richard Guindon  (1935-), Guindon cartoon caption

Lawyer:  How do you feel about defense attorneys?

Potential Juror:  I wish all of you had been smothered at birth.

Lawyer:  I ask that this juror be excused on grounds of bias.

Judge:  Oh, I don't know. You didn't ask him how he feels about prosecutors.

Defendant: I hate coming out here at seven in the morning and having to sit downstairs with a bunch of criminals.

Judge: I have to do the same thing every day.

Defendant: Yeah, but you don't have to sit down in a holding tank with 'em.

Judge: Every day I come in and I meet the dregs of society, and then I have to meet their clients. Think of that.

Did you hear about the terrorist who hijacked a 747 full of lawyers? He threatened to release one every hour if his demands weren't met.

Any time a lawyer is seen and not heard, it's a shame to wake him.

If you can't find a lawyer who knows the law, find one who knows the judge.

An Associate Justice of the Supreme Court was sitting by a river when a Traveler approached and said:

"I wish to cross. Will it be lawful to use this boat?"

"It will," was the reply; "it is my boat."

The Traveler thanked him, and pushing the boat into the water embarked and rowed away. But the boat sank and he was drowned.

"Heartless man!" said an Indignant Spectator. "Why did you not tell him that your boat had a hole in it?"

"The matter of the boat's condition," said the great jurist, "was not brought before me."

Ambrose Bierce, Fantastic Fables, 1899

Attorney: Let me give you my honest opinion.

Client: No, I'm paying for professional advice.

Judge:  I'm beginning to doubt your credentials as a lawyer.

Gomez:  I resent that!

Judge:  I think you're a fraud.

Gomez:  That's different!

Harry Winkler & Hanniball Coons, "The Addams Family in Court" (1965), The Addams Family (1964-66)

Changing lawyers is like changing deck chairs on the Titanic.

Animals aren't as stupid as people think: after all, they don't have any lawyers.

There was a typo in lawyer Ed Morrison's ad. His logo is: "Your case is no stronger than your attorney," not "stranger."

newspaper correction from the Tulsa Gusher

A lawyer is an expert on justice in the same way a prostitute is an expert on love.

"Have you a criminal lawyer in this burg?"

"We think so, but we haven't been able to prove it on him yet."

Carl Sandburg, The People, Yes, 1936

Cartoon from Life, February 8, 1917

"If I had but one life to give for my country, it would be a lawyer's."

In law school, time is meaningless; but in time, law school is meaningless.

Anonymous graffiti on law school wall

A prominent Manhattan lawyer was arraigned in Manhattan Criminal Court yesterday on charges of impersonating Lenox Hill Hospital doctors and ordering unneeded enemas for patients.

New York Newsday

"I've never been in love. I've always been a lawyer."

Opposing lawyers, though as keen
As shears, ne'er cut themselves, but what's between.

The judge declared at the beginning of trial: "Counsel for the defense has paid me $15,000 to find for his client. Counsel for the plaintiff has paid me $10,000 to find for hers. In order to make this a fair trial, I am returning $5,000 to the defense."

Snollygoster.      n.   A devious, inept, talkative, or unethical lawyer; a shyster. [U.S. slang and colloquial, since c. 1860]

Psychiatrist Frasier Crane:  I hate lawyers.

Psychiatrist Niles Crane:  I do too, but they make wonderful patients. They have excellent health insurance, and they never get better.

Frasier, American television comedy

"All lawyers are assholes!" declared a man in a bar.

"I resent that!" someone replied.

"Why, are you a lawyer?"

"No, I'm an asshole!"

Honorable Charles H. Hungadunga
c/o Hungadunga, Hungadunga, Hungadunga, Hungadunga, & McCormack,


In re yours of the 5th inst., yours to hand and beg to rep., brackets, that we have gone over the ground carefully and we seem to believe, i.e., to wit., e.g., in lieu, that despite all our precautionary measures which have been involved, we seem to believe that it is hardly necessary for us to proceed unless we receive an ipso facto that is not neglible at this moment, quotes, unquotes, and quotes.

Hoping this finds you, I beg to remain, as of June 9, cordially yours,


Letter to his lawyer, dictated by Captain Spaulding (Groucho Marx)
to his secretary Horatio Jamison (Zeppo Marx),
in the film Animal Crackers (1930)

A doctor told his patient that she had only six months to live.

"Isn't there anything I can do?" pleaded the patient.

"Marry a lawyer," the doctor advised. "It will be the longest six months of your life."

A philosopher is a blind man in a dark cellar at midnight looking for a black cat that isn't there. He is distinguished from a theologian, in that the theologian finds the cat. He is also distinguished from a lawyer, who smuggles in a cat in his overcoat pocket, and emerges to produce it in triumph.

William L. Prosser, "My Philosophy of Law," Cornell Law Quarterly, 1942

A man was on vacation when he ran into an old acquaintance. "Hello, Joe," he said. "I haven't seen you in years. What are you doing these days?"

"I'm practicing law," whispered Joe. "But don't tell my mother. She thinks I'm still a pimp."

'As the successful lawyer appears ...' Cartoon by Crawford Young, from Life, February 8, 1917

L a w y e r   J o k e s   E t c e t e r a

Riddles | Proverbs | The Legal Mind | Neither Fish Nor Fowl
A Loathsome Miscellany | What Oft Was Thought | A Fitting End