Q&A — Featuring Attorney Matthew Scott Pillado.
By Daisy Garcia
Matthew Scott Pillado is the owner of Matthew Pillado PLLC which is a law firm based out in Hurst, Texas. Pillado practices criminal defense and his law firm also handle personal injury cases. We asked Pillado a few questions regarding his life as an attorney and what it is like being a criminal defense attorney.
Did you always want to be an attorney?
It was either that or become a priest. As a kid, I used to tell my Grandmother that I was either going to be one of those. I think I just said priest because she liked to go to church all the time. Being an attorney is something I always dreamt of becoming.
What do you like most about being an attorney? The least?
The best part of being an attorney is having the power and the ability to help people and make a difference. Client’s often come to us at their worse point in their lives; having the ability to offer an empathetic ear and a passionate and smart legal strategy is what makes being an attorney so special.
As far as least — I’d probably say the bureaucracy and high-regulation that the government places upon all licensed attorneys.
What has been the greatest challenge for you as a criminal defense attorney?
Tough question. Working in the criminal justice system regularly you hear and see all the flaws within the system — some more dangerous than others. Knowing all that is tough because you are only one individual and you cannot fix the entire system. But I strive to fix the system by representing my clients to the best of my ability.
Was there anyone along the way that helped mentor or influence your work?
While growing up, I had a lot of exposure to the legal system and the prison system so my upbringing and childhood gave me my passion for the law. While I was in law school, I had an amazing group of mentors but one that stands out is Lisa Haines. She showed me a lot about how to practice criminal defense and how to aggressively fight for my clients. Not to mention she is just a great attorney.
Is there anything you wish you would have done differently?
From a law viewpoint, I’ve always done everything I could to help a client; not all the cases turned out how I wanted but even then, the clients knew the effort I put into their case. So from that perspective, no, but perhaps from a business end, I would have changed a few things.
What is some important advice you have for a first-year attorney?
Do not be scared to make a mistake. Our field demands perfection so making even one mistake can seem devastating. But to get better at your craft, you have to be willing to take risks, even if it means you may make a mistake; it is the only way you will get better.
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