A Philadelphia Lawyer Referral Service Lawyer Talks About Changing Phila Personal Injury Lawyers

April 13th, 2022 by admin Leave a reply »

Frank called a while back and asked about firing his lawyer. He complained that his lawyer “wasn’t doing anything”. I frequently receive this kind of call, but rarely do I take the case. It is no pleasure generally to be the second lawyer in on a personal injury case. You must get it right the first time. Here’s why I usually turn these cases down.

The most frequent reason is that the case isn’t very strong, either in terms of liability, damages or both. In other words, it’s a bad case. Lawyers, especially overworked lawyers, tend to neglect bad cases. So the first thing that pops into my head when I get a phone call complaining that a lawyer is neglecting a client is that there are major problems with the case.

The next most frequent problem is the client. Most clients are wonderful to work with. But some are unreasonable in their expectations, discourteous, overly demanding, etc. Lawyers tend to react badly to such clients. The lawyer may neglect the file simply because he dislikes the client. If I sense that the client is going to be impossible to satisfy, I am not going to take the case. Whenever I am approached by a client who wants me to take a case over, I consider this possibility.

Another issue is that I will have to pay the first lawyer out of my fee for the time he spent on the case. The case therefore needs to be quite strong on both liability and damages. If there’s “not enough to go around”, I may make a business judgment not to take the case. That leaves the client with an upset first lawyer and a case in legal limbo. And the client is left with little choice but to continue lawyer shopping. That’s the risk you run when you pick the wrong lawyer.

Finally, especially if the first lawyer is not a PI specialist, the file may not have been well handled. Picking up the pieces is not always so easy. Some mistakes are irreparable.

Treat your selection of a personal injury lawyer the way you would any matter of importance in your life. It is crucial to make the right choice in selecting an attorney, the first time.

Insurance companies react to a change in lawyers in various ways. They may view the switch as a sign that the case and/or the client is in trouble. This can result in increased reluctance to settle and a stepped up investigation into the merits of the case. On the other hand, the new lawyer may breathe needed energy into the case, causing the insurance company to seriously consider settlement.

The reputation of the new lawyer for ethics, credibility and dependability are key to the insurance company’s reaction to a switch in lawyers. Whether you are choosing your first lawyer or pondering a switch, you must pick a lawyer you can trust. You have the right to competent, reliable representation and courteous treatment by a lawyer in whom you have confidence.


Comments are closed.