Handling a personal injury or wrongful death case for a client can be challenging for many reasons. In most cases, the process is complicated and it seems as though almost every case involves several unexpected and challenging issues. Because of the way our court system is set up, claims and cases can take a very long time to get resolved.
Most clients are not aware of these difficulties. Sometimes, even after a very good settlement or jury verdict, a client may develop regret or “buyers remorse” over the outcome they once approved and liked. I’m not a psychologist, but my 27 years of practicing law leads me to believe this normally has something to do with a client’s lack of understanding of the system or unreasonable expectations based upon what they may see on television or the movies.
When you take the above in to consideration, this is one reason why there’s something so very special when a past client refers a new client to our law firm for help. It tells us that despite these challenges, the client still understands and appreciates the fact that we always had his best interest in mind and always did our best to protect his legal rights. It means that we earned his trust.
Driving home this morning from Starbucks, I listened to a radio advertisement about a service that helps people who have tax issues with the IRS. The ad went on to say, “recently, even an IRS agent hired us to help with her tax problems.”
And that got me to thinking…
While we don’t handle tax matters, we do handle personal injury and wrongful death claims. We litigate almost daily with claims adjusters, insurance companies and defense attorneys. Weekly we appear in court before judges and several times a year take cases to trial in front of juries.
Remembering the message behind the radio ad, I simply wanted to share the fact we you that several times a year, we too are hired by clients referred to us by people working “for the other side” or in the court system. Here’s what I mean.
Each year we receive new referrals from other side. I’m talking referrals from insurance claims adjusters, defense attorneys and sometimes, judges.
What’s really unique about these referrals is that these are the same claims adjusters and defense attorneys we file and negotiate claims or cases against on a weekly or monthly basis. Some tried to fight us tooth and nail over various issues and frankly, it sometimes felt like a 12 round heavy weight fight without the gloves.
But here’s the deal. These professionals made the referral to our office because of what they experienced when dealing with us. They referred their mother, sister or neighbor because they knew, for a fact, that we would use all of our experience, resources and passion to help their referral as much as we’ve helped our other clients over the past 27 years.
When it comes to referrals, it sometimes gets even a bit more interesting. This happens when local judges and their court staff refer their family and friends to us for help.
Getting these referrals is an extremely humbling experience. Here’s why.
When you think about it, these officers of the court sit, listen, watch and interact with dozens, if not hundreds, of lawyers each week. Judges who preside over jury trials also have the opportunity to independently observe how different lawyers in the community try their cases. Frankly, they get to see, for themselves, who the best trial lawyers are in town.
Court clerks and bailiffs have a unique opportunity to listen and watch how lawyers behave and perform. They can see who makes a good impression with the judge and jury. They know who is prepared and who isn’t. They have a chance to see how well these lawyers prepare their briefs and persuade jurors in difficult cases. They know which lawyers can be trusted to place the client’s best interest before anyone else.
Now, truth be told, referrals from insurance claims adjusters and defense attorneys just didn’t start happening overnight. In fact, these professionals first started to refer new potential clients to our office around 1996, about 10 years after we first started to practice law. Looking back, these new referrals began to come our way only after we learned our craft and started winning big and sometimes difficult cases. As our reputation grew, so did the referrals and we’re very appreciative of this fact.
Our first referral from a judge came after he watched us successfully try a difficult jury trial case in his courtroom. In an unrelated meeting in his chambers long after the trial was over, he mentioned his satisfaction with our display of trial skills and wondered if we would be interested in helping out a family friend with her case in another town. Well, we were and we successfully did.
We’re proud to say that over time and after many more hearings and trials, more and more judges (and their staff members) have been thoughtful enough to refer family and friends to our firm to get their legal questions answered or, for legal representation. Some of the referrals we’ve received included matters involving personal injury, wrongful death, premises liability, business litigation, and administrative hearings.
As with all our referrals, I can comfortably report that every single referral was treated like gold. Some took longer than others but when it was all said and done, we were able to help and bring substantial value to the referred clients.
Referrals are easy to make and always receive our immediate attention. We will personally speak with your referral and help any way we can. Our expertise if focused on helping victims of personal injury and wrongful death. If your referral needs the help of a lawyer in another area of law, then we’ll gladly share the name and number of several top-rated lawyers who we trust. To help get things started off on the right foot, we’ll even help introduce the two.
The bottom line is that we enjoy helping people with lots of band aids resolve their personal injury and wrongful death cases. If you have a family member or friend who needs help or who may have been losing sleep staying up at night agonizing over a legal question, just tell them to give us a call and we’ll try to help. We’ll help when we can and when it’s in the referral’s best interest, offer alternative options.