From the New Jersey Lawyer Daily Briefing (10/8/08):
Jogging? Transcendental meditation? Get real. The Times of London previews a study out this week that shows when the going gets tough for British lawyers, they turn directly to alcohol and hard drugs. The professional support group LawCare estimates 30 percent of male lawyers and 20 percent of female lawyers drink to excess, and drug use is fighting to catch up. Says LawCare's Hilary Tilby, "Once, after dinner you'd be offered After Eights - now it's the mirror with lines of cocaine." Legal Business magazine heard tell that partners call their connections directly from their office and pick up the deliveries at the reception desk. Some firms have "cocaine clubs" where clients and their attorneys play poker and take drugs together. As one lawyer told it, "I spanked £100,000 on cocaine in one year and no one noticed. The legal profession, unlike other classic professions such as medicine and teaching, does not give a damn, as long as you are profitable." And what are the firms in Big Law U.K. doing to address this problem? Legal Business did a survey but the results were spotty. Half the firms said they did at least have a formal drug policy. But 84 percent said they did not do any random drug-testing ... and the other 16 percent refused to answer.
And now we know why bar associations always hold wine tastings.