Image Credit: Walt Disney Corp.
There is no single national or state licensing agency that distinguishes a chef from a cook. That said, for those trained in the culinary arts, there is little disagreement that a chef is not a cook. What differentiates the two? While there is no bright line separating a chef from a cook, there are some helpful markers.
A chef will often have a culinary degree. A chef will normally have extensive chef-supervised training in a culinary school or the equivalent experience outside of school. A chef generally will supervise those less experienced who perform culinary work as needed and directed. It is said that a chef is responsible for the soul of the food, is creative, and may operate without slavishly following recipes. A cook, less experienced and still learning, will generally use someone else's recipes and the directions for execution on these recipes.
So here's the deal: When we hire professionals, we may not be able to distinguish a "chef" from a "cook." Lacking experience or education, we may think that all hospitals are the same, even though some fairly simple research might show one hospital to have a safety score of C-, while another within the same geographic region is on the U.S. News Best Hospitals Honor Roll. We lawyers in our own way may be either chefs or cooks.
At Hackard Law we would not even qualify as a "cook" in many areas of law. Admiralty law, Antitrust law, and Aviation law are just some of the "A" categories that we have no knowledge, inclination or experience in. We could go on from there and fill a very large list from "B" to "Z."
Now where we think of ourselves as "chefs" - creative, experienced and not necessarily following fixed recipes - is in the area of probate, trust & estate litigation. That said, there is no national or state badge of authority for this area of practice. We are attorneys who like to practice litigation in estate and trust lawsuits. In our experience, such litigation may be quite creative, and a "fixed recipe" of success may simply not exist. As with chefs - there are many different styles that may work well. And, like chefs, we continually strive for excellence in what we do.
If you have an estate, trust or probate litigation matter that you think will be advanced by creativity and experience, call us at Hackard Law: 916-313-3030. We'll be happy to speak with you.