I recentled settled a rather large personal injury case for a client who hired me after starting with another lawyer.
Like many clients I’ve had over the years, he was incredibly patient with his lawyer.
All he wanted was the lawyer to work on his case, give it some attention, keep him posted and return some calls.
He got none of that.
Finally, after hearing absolutely nothing from his lawyer for one year—- that’s right—- 12 months, he decided to call me at the recommendation of some friends.
As I do in these situations, I agreed to take over the case and get the file from the other lawyer. I also told the client any fee due the lawyer would come out of my fee, so he would not be stuck paying 2 lawyers.
I can’t tell you how many cases I’ve done over the years where the client started with another lawyer, but ended up hiring me to get the job done.
Anyway, it is not that the other lawyer is a bad guy or a bad lawyer. He is a very good divorce and real estate lawyer, but has no business handling personal injury cases. To do nothing for 1 year is totally inexcusable. In fact, if push ever came to shove that lawyer could have found himself in hot water with the professional conduct committee for lawyers.
In my view, helping personal injury victims is not a part time job. My entire office is geared to that one aspect of the law and nothing else. All my people are single-mindedly focused on injury law, and each has particular skills to make it happen.
How can a lawyer let a case go for so long without any action?
They do it all the time. After listening to divorces all day long and handling other legal problems, the last thing they want to do is put the time and effort into an injury case. They sit back and let the insurance company be the aggressor.
When the insurance company has strung them along enough, it will make a crazy offer which many of these lawyers end up recommending to their clients just to get the case done with and put a few bucks in their pockets. By the time this happens the client is so exhausted and worn out from waiting, they end up taking peanuts just because they’ve had enough.
This does NOT happen at Donahue Law.
When an injury victim hires me, we go on the attack. We drive the case, make things happen and put the insurance company on the defensive end of things.
Let’s face it, if an injury client suspects his lawyer has not done a lick of work for a long time, what must the insurance company think of the same lawyer?
Those experts see 1st hand a totally unprepared or lazy lawyer.
The result will be a small offer to settle, if any offer is made at all.
If you are currently being represented by a lawyer like that, get rid of him/her as quickly as you can. You are not married to your lawyer. You can legally change lawyers at any time. You only have one chance/ one bite at the apple, so give it your best shot.
Injury law is a tough business under the best circumstances, so there’s no need to tolerate a lawyer who is not doing the job, let alone one who does not return your calls.
At Donahue Law, I’m honored to help injury victims.
I consider the lawyer/client relationship to be a sacred trust.
I wouldn’t consider taking you or your case for granted.
We work hard.
I might not be able to help you with a divorce, criminal case, municipal law, corporate law, or real estate, but I can point you in the right direction on all cases.
Injury law is our thing.
Keep your strength.