It is your job to be very actively involved with your case from day one. That is the best way to ensure that your lawyer does his job properly. Many personal injury attorneys are overworked or are simply too lazy to do the job right without prompting. Everyone has heard that “the squeaky wheel gets the grease.” Nowhere is this truism more important than in personal injury litigation. visit Console and Associates P.C.
Especially if you have entrusted your case to one of the larger personal injury firms, your case may be pushed onto an associate who has nothing financially to gain by handling your case in an aggressive manner. The famous partner known for several multi-million dollar jury verdicts may simply not have the time for your little case. Don’t be surprised if some fresh faced 24 year old gets handed your file. Now don’t get me wrong. Many young lawyers are filled with energy for effective battle with the insurance companies. But many are handling a hundred or more other files and yours may be placed on a very slow assembly line.
Worse, the associate may have no financial stake in your case. The arrangements vary from firm to firm, but at the vast majority, the only lawyer who has a financial interest in your case is the one who brought the case into the firm. The lowly associate who actually ends up processing the case is undoubtedly on straight salary. His financial incentive is to turn over his cases with the least bother to him, even if this means settling the case for less than it’s worth. On the other hand, if you retain a solo practitioner or small partnership, the lawyer who handles your case will actually receive the attorney’s fees earned on the case. Nothing motivates like a financial incentive. Even though lawyers are ethically bound to zealously represent the interests of all their clients, human nature should tell you that you will do best if your lawyer has something to gain by the aggressive and forceful prosecution of your case.
Staying active throughout the process is important regardless of the lawyer you retain. If your case has been shuffled off to an associate, this is especially key. You should insist on receiving copies of all correspondence your lawyer sends out on your behalf. You should also ask for copies of all letters from the insurance company and its lawyers. You should also review your medical records for accuracy. This is the only way you can know for sure if your lawyer is being straight with you. Also, since the lawyer knows you are keeping close tabs on him, he will be sure not to “back burner” your case. In other words, he will know that unless he stays very active, you will be contacting him with difficult questions. It is your right to know what is going on at all times with your case. And it is your right to have a lawyer who will aggressively pursue a rapid and fair settlement of your case. Do not accept anything less. The squeaky wheel does indeed get the grease.