This month we chat with Meron Tadesse who is a Tax and Business attorney based in Atlanta, Georgia.
Meron holds a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting and Finance from the Georgia State University, as well as a Joint Degree from the John Marshall Law School in Atlanta.
After passing the bar, she decided to follow her entrepreneurial spirit and open her own law practice. Soon after, Tadesse Law, LLC. was born.Tadesse Law LLC. is a law firm that focuses on business, tax, and mediation services.
Below is the interview between For Women in Law (FWIL) and Meron Tadesse (MT), verbatim.
What is your area of expertise?
MT:Business and Tax law.The business side is formation, reviewing/drafting of agreements, negotiations, etc.The tax side is IRS defence. Basically, if you get a letter from the IRS, I help you resolve the tax issue so that you an avoid such things like garnishment of wages, etc.
FWIL:What inspired you to study law?
MT:I took a business law class in undergraduate school and decided to be a lawyer from there.
FWIL:As a woman in law, have you experienced gender bias? If yes, how have you dealt with it?
MT:Not that I was aware of, I own my own law firm so maybe that is the reason.
FWIL:What does being an alpha female mean to you?
MT:Hmmm… a female that is strong and goes after what she wants…relentlessly.
FWIL:The journey of most legal professionals is not always an easy one. What are some of the lessons you have learned along the way and how have they shaped your outlook on life?
MT:“Not easy” is an understatement. As a legal professional you literally have other people’s lives in your hands. That is a large stress. What I learned is to be strict about keeping business and personal separate and to always make time for myself.
FWIL:What is the best advice you would give to aspiring legal professionals?
MT:Do it because you love it. Don’t do it if you are just looking to make money, there are other ways to make money with less stress.
FWIL:What are some of things that you had to re-learn and unlearn in the process of setting up your law firm, Tadesse Law?
MT:Hmmm… the whole process of starting my law firm was a new learning experience so there really was not anything to unlearn or relearn.
FWIL:What specific legal services does your law firm provide?
MT:I offer tailored legal services according to the client. I also offer payment plans and flat fees to make the services more affordable. Our goal is to provide assistance to the middle class which is the most under-served population. There are a lot of free legal services (if you qualify) and a lot of expensive legal services but nothing in the middle. We try to close that gap.
FWIL:What skills do you think every young woman in law (or aspirant) should possess?
MT:Drive. You cannot have a quitting spirit. You must be resilient.
FWIL:As a business owner, what is the key in keeping great reviews?
MT:Providing good customer service, and if the client has an issue try to solve it. But also know that you will not make everyone happy.
FWIL:What recent change/amendment in the law has caught your attention? (do you agree with the change? Why/why not)
MT:There are several tax changes that have caught my eye in the new reform. I am still studying the effects as it does affect tax returns and how to structure certain aspects of a business.
FWIL:The world is constantly changing, in your opinion, what are some of the challenges that legal professionals will face in future?
MT:It seems like people are more aware of racial tensions. I believe that currently black attorneys make up 4.6% of the legal population. Hopefully the new awareness will invoke more minorities to join the legal world and help foster a positive change.
FWIL:As a legal professional, it is quite important to effectively use your network. How do you meet other legal professionals and what are some of your effective networking skills?
MT:I go to networking events, I also have used LinkedIn.
FWIL:What does the term “role model” mean to you? Which phenomenal woman in law would you call your role model?
MT:Role model means someone that you look up to, or someone that is in a position in life that you strive to achieve.I would say Judge Hatchett. I used to watch her on television when I was younger and actually got to meet her a couple of years ago. It was a full circle moment for me.
FWIL:What books have you read that have greatly influenced your life?
MT:Lol the bible. The other books I read are just for fun, nothing too deep.
FWIL:What’s a quote that you live by? Your mantra
MT:“Small thing to a giant”It basically reminds me that whatever it is, it is insignificant compared to the total picture of my life and what I am trying to achieve.
FWIL:What do you think is an over rated value to have?
MT:Nothing if it is a true value. To me values are like morals, so they cannot be overrated.
FWIL:If not law, what would you be doing?
MT:Probably something more creative and related to design.
FWIL:How can people reach out to you? (social media handles)
Social- all handles are @tadesselawWebsite- www.tadesselaw.com