Countdown to Lawyer Well-Being Week

2020/05/04 00:00:00

Together We Can Bring Out the Best in the Legal Profession

Well-being is an institution-wide responsibility. When our professional and organizational cultures support our well-being, we are better able to make good choices that allow us to thrive and be our best for our clients, colleagues, and organizations. It is up to all of us to cultivate new professional norms and cultures that enable and encourage well-being. Do your part and help spread the word.

See the Awareness Messaging materials to help you do so and add #LawyerWellbeingWeek to your posts.

Lawyer Well-being Week Activities

Lawyer Well-Being Week is a good next step we can take together. To align with Mental Health Awareness Month in May, Lawyer Well-Being Week will occur May 4-8, 2020.

Participating organizations include the National Task Force on Lawyer Well-Being, the American Bar Association (ABA) Law Practice Division and its Attorney Well-Being Committee, and the ABA Commission on Lawyer Assistance Program’s (CoLAP) Well-Being Committee.  We invite you to join them in being a lawyer well-being champion.

The aim of Well-Being Week is to raise awareness and encourage action across the profession to improve well-being for lawyers and their support teams. The Lawyer Well-Being Week team of volunteers has been working hard to make it easy for you to get involved. You can help make a difference by organizing or joining in activities and events.

Download the Lawyer Well-Being Week Infographic


We can no longer ignore our profession’s well-being problem.

(Source: Krill et al., 2016; Mental Health Daily report of suicide by occupation)



21-36% qualify as problem drinkers. Higher for men; under age 30; and private practice, especially solo practitioners.



28% report mild or higher depression symptoms. Highest for men and solo practitioners.



23% report mild or higher stress symptoms. Highest for women and solo practitioners.



19% report mild or higher anxiety symptoms. Highest for women and solo practitioners.

Top 10


Ranked #8 in a study of suicide by occupation. Rate is 1.33 times the national norm.


Too many lawyers are not thriving. A significant number struggle with mental health and alcohol use disorders. Many others, while not dealing with a diagnosable illness, still are not fully well. The result is that many lawyers are unable to be their best for their clients, colleagues, communities, and families.

It's Time to Take Action

Be Like The Hundreds of Organizations That Already Are Making a Difference

Many organizations already have responded in a variety of constructive ways: Over 170 legal employers have signed the ABA’s Well-Being Pledge, legal employers and professional associations have launched well-being committees, state bars have held well-being conferences, more and more states offer CLE credit for well-being topics, and much more.

Don’t be left behind. Be a leader at the forefront of change. At stake is not only lawyers’ individual health and happiness but also our clients’ welfare. Lawyers who are not fully well cannot do their best work for their clients. Their ability to contribute positively to their employers, colleagues, families, and communities also may be impaired. The vitality of the profession’s future also is at risk. The legal profession cannot continue to tolerate a reputation for generating chronic illness and dissatisfaction and still expect to attract the best and brightest. Younger generations are seeking work that respects them as whole people.

Get Involved

You can make a positive impact during Lawyer Well-Being Week.

We invite you to coordinate or participate in local activities, whether you’re an individual, law firm, corporate legal department, government entity, bar association, or other organization or consultant involved in the legal profession. Here is your invitation to participate. Please share it with others!

Check out these resources and activity ideas to help you get started:




Webinar Title: The Best Lawyer You Can Be. Presented by: Prof. Larry Krieger, Dr. Eva Selhub, Dr. Shelly Canter, Cheryl Conner, Esq., and Stewart Levine, Esq.

May 7, 2020

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