With 30 years of handling catastrophic personal injury cases I am often contacted by friends and family of someone who just had a horrible injury or even death in the family.
I am always at a loss of how I can respond to their concerns about the spouse or the children of the victim.
I as an attorney and they as a family member do not want to intrude on the grief or the hectic situation that often turns the family upside down.
But sadly I often see 3 situations
1. The defendant (frequently an insurance company or trucking company or other corporation) are busy gathering or hiding or destroying evidence.
This includes things like locating and interviewing witnesses, taping over or losing videos and disposing of property damage.
It is very frustrating because I know our investigator and attorneys could be protecting their rights, while they are attending to their loved ones medical situations, children, loss of income in the household, a destroyed car or worse funeral arrangements.
Why are people made to feel sleazy if they have a lawyer working for them immediately after a tragedy?
Meanwhile insurance companies and businesses are expected to have a team of lawyers and experts, 24/7 and often at the scene before first responders.
Recently we had a catastrophically injured client crushed by a fallen object. The defendants removed the object before the ambulance picked up our client!
2. Unethical attorneys and hired runners are contacting and soliciting people who they don’t know often at the hospitals in the ER or places that they aren’t thinking straight.
The scariest part is the lawyers who engage in this kind of conduct are usually the least experienced or most ill equipped to handle such a serious case.
3. Many people make the decision of hiring a lawyer based on a TV or other marketing strategy.
All I will say is that after 30 years of litigating serious cases, I have never seen a lawyer who does heavy TV marketing in the court house.
Trust me adjusters don’t pay top dollars to non-trial attorneys.
Have you ever seen a TV lawyer talking about a record jury verdict? Nope they brag on $100K settlements (in the type of wrecks that we collect millions).
Many times we have been hired after the client fires such low skilled lawyers and we find additional insurance coverage missed by the first lawyer.
I wish I could accomplish 2 things:
1. Find an acceptable way for people to communicate with their family and loved ones about getting an experienced lawyer immediately after a tragedy.
or better yet
2. Convince people to do research and their due diligence and make a lawyer selection in advance “just in case of tragedy”; like they do for estate planning and other important decisions.
I guess I can dream.
Never settle for less!
MAKE IT A GREAT DAY!!
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