Attorney at Law Magazine Los Angeles Publisher Sarah Torres sat down with Arash Hashemi to discuss his career.
AALM: When did you first know you wanted to become an attorney? What drew you to this career?
Hashemi: When I was a kid I wanted to be in the NBA. One day, in the eighth grade, I was at the doctor’s office. The doctor was a family friend and he asked me what I wanted to do when I grew up. When I answered that I want to be a professional basketball player he looked at me and said, “You should be an attorney.” Something clicked in my head and at that moment I decided I wanted to be an attorney.
AALM: What do you find particularly rewarding about being an attorney?
Hashemi: The most rewarding part of being an attorney is when a client and his family thank you. Knowing you can help someone in a way that truly touches their life is the best reward.
AALM: What first drew you to practice criminal defense?
Hashemi: As a teenager the “glamorization” of courtroom trials in television shows and movies was a big draw. Later in life the main draw to criminal defense was my fascination with the criminal mind. What I mean by that is I wanted to see what drove professional criminals to do what they do, such as serial killers or members of the mob.
AALM: What challenges have you encountered since going solo and how have you overcome them?
Hashemi: The most challenging part of being a sole practitioner is dealing with the fact that you are not just an attorney. You have to run a business and practice law. They don’t teach you how to run a business in law school. It can be overwhelming if you are not ready for it.
AALM: What do you enjoy doing outside of work? Hobbies? Sports?
Hashemi: Obviously my favorite hobby is basketball. To this day I still dream about playing in the NBA. So I keep that dream alive by playing in adult rec leagues.
AALM: What is the best compliment you’ve received or the funniest story you have?
Hashemi: The best compliment I received was after a preliminary hearing in the court hallway. I was speaking to my client and his family when this little old lady who was sitting in the courtroom came up to me and said, “I just wanted to say you are a good attorney, that policeman was lying!”