5 Legal Lessons The Griswold’s Christmas Vacation Could Teach You

Posted on 12-16-2015 by
Tags: entertainment , LIT , movies , Latest Headlines & Stories

Each year, as we draw close to the Christmas holiday, the season wouldn’t be the same without the dysfunctional, accident-waiting-to-happen family in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. Between flame-engulfed Christmas trees to packaged pet, this family’s holiday makes a lot of ours’ seem pretty calm.

But could you imagine if they created a National Lampoon’s Griswolds Go To Court?

We may already have a glimpse into that as this infamous holiday comedy classic depicts numerous legal lessons you could apply. Here are five lessons that you can take away from the Griswolds’ *achem* unique *achem* Christmas season.

1.  Don’t be afraid to ask the hard(or uncomfortable) questions

“Would it be indecent to ask the grandparents to stay at a hotel?”- Audrey

Shortly after the arrival of the family, Cark half-heartedly asks his wife the previously-mentioned question. While those kind of questions are typically asked in the same fashion, it still remains a very hard (and sometimes uncomfortable) question to ask; however, some of the most successful attorneys are those who are not afraid to ask the very same things.


2. Be Able To Accept Unfavorable Outcomes

“We have plenty of room.”-Ellen

Before you jump the gun and think that I’m saying that attorneys shouldn’t fight for their client, that isn’t the case, but no matter how hard of a fight attorney puts up, things won’t always go their way.


3.  Not All People That Are In Need Of Your Services Can Afford Them

“Uncle Clark, are you sure you ain't Santa Claus?”- Ruby Sue

“I'm sure... I can't even afford to be an elf.”- Clark

It can be heart-breaking when you see a child doubting Santa. This exchange between Clark and his niece hits a sobering (but often true) topic- affordability. There are tons of people like Ruby Sue; good people who weren’t raised in healthy financial environments. Just because they don’t have money, doesn’t mean they don’t have legal needs. There are many people who could be in need of an attorney, but just don’t have the means to afford one, which is why pro bono work can be such a blessing for many people, and fulfilling to the one providing the pro bono work.


4.  Keep Track Of All Details

“Yes officer, it seems my husband's been abducted. The man was, was wearing a blue leisure suit. Plates were from Kansas. He was a huge, beastly, bulging man.” – Mrs. Helen Shirley

When her husband is kidnapped by Cousin Eddie, Mrs. Shirley took notice of numerous descriptive details regarding the buffoon. Like Mrs. Shirley, attorneys should keep track of all details. This can allow the discovery of patterns or inconsistencies in stories and could lead to a blemish with their opponent’s case.


5.  Think Of How Your Course Will Affect Your Client Before Acting

“Sometimes things look good on paper, but lose their luster when you see how it affects real folks.” –Mr. Frank Shirley

When Mr. Shirley decided to cut back on the Christmas bonuses he failed to consider how this would affect his workers. Likewise, there may be situations where an attorney and their client disagree with what the next course of action should be. So, before choosing which direction to take, attorneys need to consider how their course of action may affect the case, as well as their client before acting. Ultimately, it’s the client who will be living with the attorney’s actions.


This Christmas classic is packed with hilarity, but no scene gets me more than the epic dinner scene. So enjoy and have a Happy Holiday!

(Please visit the site to view this video)

Quotes found on movie’s IMDB page.


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