If there ever was a derogatory term for a lawyer, it is this – being called an ambulance chaser is similar to being compared to a vulture; you’re portrayed as being responsible for sucking the blood out of someone who is literally fighting for their life. It’s not hard to understand why all personal injury lawyers are tarred with the same brush even though some of them are decent human beings who value their ethics and morals – we hear of them hounding people to file cases, suing people who have done nothing except be in the wrong place at the wrong time for absurd amounts of money, clogging up the courts and in general, making a mockery of our judicial system.
Attorneys can stop being perceived as heartless ambulance chasers who are out to scam people of their money if only they:
- Stop soliciting personal injury cases: It is against the law to actively solicit cases, but attorneys find loopholes to beat this rule. They’re there at the scene of an accident, pressurizing the victims to file suit even before they’ve barely regained their bearings. They don’t value human life and suffering; all they care about is money. If attorneys wait for people to come to them rather than running behind them and hounding them for cases, they would be seen in a better light.
- Stop filing absurd cases: If our judiciary is to be valued more, people have got to stop filing and fighting absurd cases, like the one where the woman sued a fast food giant for spilling hot coffee on herself, successfully. When lawyers discourage people from filing frivolous lawsuits, they do lose out on legal fees. But what they gain is a whole lot more – respect for their entire community.
- Are honest with their clients: Almost every personal injury lawyer you meet will tell you that you have a solid case and that you’re going to win a large settlement and that they are not going to charge you a dime unless you win the case, in which case they get paid a percentage of your monetary settlement. But that is not the whole truth, and every attorney knows this. If they are honest with their clients and tell them that they will incur incidental costs and that they are going to be spending a lot of time and effort on the case, people will soon begin look at them with different eyes.
Personal injury cases are traumatic experiences for the victims, and when attorneys keep this in mind while taking on the case, they become more human and less of a preying monster.
This guest post was contributed by Donna Mitchell , who regularly writes on the topic of online paralegal schools. She welcomes your comments and questions at her email address: firstname.lastname@example.org