Updated: January 9, 2013
Believing that there is no such thing as luck, we work hard with the frame of mind that luck is really “where preparation meets opportunity.”
Our personal injury representation is first and foremost a time for thorough and complete preparation. We must quickly and carefully gather the facts. This includes capturing the names and addresses of all witnesses accurately. And, obtaining clear pictures that can be critical in establishing liability is also important. It is a wise practice to use a smart phone for pictures or keep a throwaway camera in the glove box of the automobile or in a purse. We Interview each witness and preserve their intended testimony by taking a deposition, if the health of the witness is fragile.
We know the law and stay current with legal research as necessary. New cases are handed down by the courts on a continuing basis and each year the legislature enacts new laws. Last year’s law may mean a loss when this year’s law could mean a lay down win. Someone said “If you do not know the law, you should know the Judge.” We do not subscribe to this theory at all. No stone will be left unturned to be fully and completely informed of the law.
Careful and knowledgeable evaluation of the evidence, including the application the law to the facts, maximizes a reliable assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of the case. Every case has weaknesses as well as strengths and this evaluation often leads to a settlement plan, or litigation, if the case is strong and the adversary is refusing to agree to a fair settlement.
We must remember that “Pigs get fat but hogs get slaughtered.” Our goal is a fair settlement and to avoid the risk of loss (or of being slaughtered). Yes, even in the strongest cases, there is a risk of loss. The reduction in time for “payday” is significant and the client often wants to enter into a settlement, which eliminates the risk of loss and gets compensation much sooner, sometimes even years sooner.
In some cases we must go to the wall and try the case (which is every person’s right) in an effort to obtain just compensation. When this becomes necessary we “pull out all stoppers.” War means war in the courtroom. We act like gentlemen and we fight like renegades
By the way, always carry uninsured motorist insurance. It is alarming how many drivers we see who have no insurance and frequently we see drivers with no driver’s license which almost always means no insurance as well. We call the person with no insurance and no assets one who is “judgement proof”. With this is the situation, you could be a double loser. Having to fight is bad enough but learning that there is nothing is disastrous. At least if you have your own coverage, you are not left “holding the bag.” The insurance companies wish to make money and will not pay out of the goodness of their heart. You must cover this risk. It is not usually expensive