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Law Offices of Seymour Wasserstrum
205 W Landis Ave
Vineland, NJ 08360

1040 Kings Highway North
Suite 404
Cherry Hill, NJ 08034

Phone: 856-696-8300
Toll Free: 1-888-845-4533
Fax: 856-696-3586

Free consultations • Credit cards accepted • Evening and Weekend appointments available • Open 8 am to 8 pm

Attorney Profile

A Personal Look at Attorney Seymour Wasserstrum and the History of his Firm

I was born in Augsburg, Germany on June 25, 1948, the only child of Sam and Clara Wasserstrum, who lost virtually their entire families in the holocaust. My parents came to the United States in 1949 and settled in New York, where my father was fortunate enough to obtain an excellent job opportunity, working for a leather bag manufacturer.

In the early 1950's, my mother's only sister, Esther, and her husband, Solomon, bought a chicken farm in Vineland. My father, believing that my mother certainly wanted to be as close to Esther as possible, decided to leave New York. Knowing how much my mother loved surprises, my father (knowing nothing about chickens) decided to buy a chicken farm in Vineland. Imagine my mother's surprise when my father told her that the family would be leaving the big city, where they had made so many friends, for the opportunity to work with lovely fowl, in modern 50's style chicken coops, where the manure smelled like perfume. Actually, at this point I believe my father really thought that the chickens would be doing all of the work.

Vineland welcomed our family in 1953, and I received a terrific education, graduating second in my high school class in 1966. I had to give the salutatorian speech in front of about 2000 people, and although I was scared to death, I pulled it off, pretty much flawlessly, and even surprised myself at how well it went.

Meanwhile, my father had purchased a little mom and pop grocery store in South Vineland in 1961. If you want to know what happened to the lovely chicken farm, you'll have to speak to me personally. Suffice it to say that my parents did a lot better in the grocery business than in the chicken and egg business.

I never much liked working on the farm, but I loved working in my parent's store. It was called Sam's Market, and I loved to work the cash register. I became very well known in the community for my mathematical abilities, and more often than not I would add up a customer's purchases and total them in my head, instead of using the adding machine. Actually, I would use the adding machine to verify the total amount due, after I had already announced the total price of the purchases from the computations made in my head, and the customers were often simply amazed at my mathematical prowess.

I couldn't wait for the school bus to drop me off after school at the store, and I did my reading and homework at the cash register, in between customers. For many years, my father, my mother, and I were the only ones that worked at the store.

We always kept a kosher house, but the store was not kosher. My mother had always been a fantastic cook, and every night around 5 PM she would leave the store, go home and cook dinner. She would normally eat by herself. When she was finished, she would drive back to the store and my father and I would drive together to the house and eat as quickly as possible so that my mother would not be left alone at the store for too long. The store was open 7 days a week from about 7:30 in the morning until about 10:30 at night. That didn't leave very much time for fun.

When I graduated from Vineland High School in 1966, I decided to go to the University of Pennsylvania to pursue my college studies. As a result, my parents hired various people to replace me. Normally, however, I would come home on weekends and go back to the usual "work in the store/study at the cash register" routine.

I was fortunate enough to have a refrigerator in my dorm room, and every weekend when I returned to Penn, I would bring back numerous care packages from my parents that would give me nutrition and sustenance during my busy college days and nights. Those were the great days of Kosher salami, bologna, corned beef, pastrami, American cheese, Swiss cheese, muenster cheese, longhorn cheese, cheese cake, honey cake, sponge cake, apple strudel, cream puffs, napoleons, donuts, Milky Ways, Zero Bars, Turkish Taffy, Now n' Later --- all things that I have not eaten in years, and would never touch with a ten foot pole today, since I have been a vegetarian since about 1992, and at present I am pretty much a vegan.

I graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1970 magna cum laude, with High Honors in Economics (I got all A's but never really understood it --- then I learned that no one really understands economics), and I also made Phi Beta Kappa. That opened the door to many of the top law schools, and I decided to stay at the University of Pennsylvania to pursue my legal career. My parents still owned Sam's Market, and I figured it was a good opportunity to continue my study in the store routine, which had proved very successful in the past. It also would have been very difficult at that time for me to give up all of those wonderful, delicious, and delightful gustatory treats (as set forth in the last paragraph) that were so readily available for me.

Little did I know at the time that the philosophy of the top law schools was to scare you to death during the first year, work you to death during the second year, and bore you to death during the third year. Actually I would say that the first year succeeded in both scaring me and working me to death, although many times I was too scared to work.

I can't say that I loved law school, and I doubt that any truthful attorney (I hear there may not be that many) would say that his/her law school experience was absolutely wonderful, ecstatic, and fulfilling. Nevertheless, I persevered and often suppressed the desire and urge to quit and become a disc jockey. I made it through with excellent grades and graduated in 1973, although not with the high honors to which I had become accustomed in the past.

Being an only child, still loving my mother's fantastic cooking, and still wanting to do some work at Sam's Market, I decided I would stay close to home and take a law job in Vineland. Being single, however, I did not think that Vineland was the greatest place to meet women.

I therefore decided that I would try for the best of both worlds --- work in Vineland at a small two partner law firm (for a small town I was actually offered a pretty decent starting salary at the time), spend some time at my parent's store, feast on my mother's wonderful home cooked meals, and spend my social life in Philadelphia, where I was able to get to share a graduate dorm room with one of my friends. I passed the bar exam on my first try and I was ready for the real world.

Having gone through so many years of rigorous schooling and training, I was very shocked to find out that the attorneys at the law firm actually expected me to work to earn my pay. I mean, I thought once you did all this education stuff, that it was supposed to be handed to you on a silver platter, and lawyers really didn't work that much anyway. When I realized what was expected of me, I figured I must have hooked up with the wrong law firm. This just didn't make sense. I had suffered all of these years in school, and I thought now the easy part was supposed to be here.

I tried to fake it for as long as I could, running to Philadelphia to socialize as often as I could. Gosh, law school really hadn't prepared me for what the practice of law was really like. Ultimately, the patience of my bosses began to wear thin. Within a year of becoming a lawyer, they told me that I was not working hard enough, law was not a 9 to 5 job, this type of practice was not my cup of tea, and I was being fired, although they were going to give me a reasonable opportunity to find work elsewhere.

Well, this is getting rather lengthy, and I don't know how long it would take to tell you about the next 28 years or so. Therefore, at this point let me just say that I am fortunate enough to have a very successful diversified law practice. I love to help people and to share the many gifts and talents that God has given me. I have two excellent attorneys on my staff, Moshe Rothenberg and Dave Huber, both of whom are very bright, hardworking, and caring for our clients.

I have a support staff of about 20 people. I have two law offices, one in Vineland and one in Cherry Hill. I have plans to open two additional offices, one in the Trenton area and another in the Atlantic City area.

My ultimate vision is to have four diversified, multifaceted law firms staffed by teams of caring, dedicated professionals who serve thousands of satisfied clients in stress-free, fun environments that are admired and respected by my peers.

My purposes are as follows:

  1. To create a family of staff members who are inspired and fulfilled in such a way that they serve clients' needs and wants beyond expectations;
  2. To improve the quality of people's lives by providing superior legal counsel and service;
  3. To deliver my legal expertise passionately and with integrity as a friend and trusted advisor to all of my clients;
  4. To have all people appreciate, acknowledge, and respect attorneys from the example I set in the communities that I serve.

My firm lives by the following these values:

  1. We deliver legal counsel passionately from the heart;
  2. We openly value and appreciate our clients, other members of the community, and each other;
  3. We hold ourselves to the highest level of ethical behavior in our work, in our health, and in our personal lives;
  4. We enjoy life and our work in the spirit of ease, fun, and play;
  5. We are relentless in our pursuit of personal and professional excellence;
  6. We live as our word
  7. We are dedicated to providing the highest quality legal service available.

Back in the 1960's and 1970's, I often could not understand how and why my parents worked so hard and for so many hours. Now I work days, nights, and weekends. I am trying to cut out the weekends, and have been somewhat successful to a point. The main office in Vineland often sees clients until 9 PM on weeknights, and we are open a full day on Saturday. They say it is great when your work is your play and your play is your work. I am trying for that, although I cannot say that I have quite achieved it as of yet.

If you would like to hear more about how I went from being fired from my first full time legal job in 1974 to where I am today, I would love to share the story with you. I enjoy talking to people and try to take all calls. So if you have the desire, feel free to call and ask for me. You can even call toll free at 1-888-845-4533. Oh, yes, the best time to reach me in the office is after 7 PM, because I spend a lot of time in Court, but you can call anytime between 8:30 in the morning until 9 PM at night if you would like to make an appointment.

If you would like us to help you, please feel free to call. Thank you.

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Contact the Law Offices of Seymour Wasserstrum for a free consultation with an experienced Vineland, New Jersey lawyer.