This is the most important question you must ask when you are looking to hire a lawyer.
After 30 years of experience and as a founder at Stillman and Friedland, I believe I have the answer to this very important question.
Most law firms representing claimants who have been injured in truck or car collisions, have suffered injuries on the job, or have experienced injuries due to the negligence of others know how to properly handle cases and recover for their clients. However, how do you know if you can trust your lawyer to do what’s best for you?
You may think that the lack of morals and values in society today makes it difficult to find such an attorney. It often seems that the almighty dollar rules and insurance companies, businesses, and banks often act in their own best interests, not yours.
When you don’t really know what’s best for your case, what the highest value and the best recovery really is, you have to trust your attorney for all of this information. Trust is the most important component in this relationship.
So how can you know who to trust under these circumstances?
The key to knowing you can trust your lawyer is revealed in the way he explains your rights to you and how he explains the positive and negative aspects of your case.
Does he discuss the credibility of the parties? How about the importance of always being honest with your doctors and anyone else involved in your case? Does he explain all the steps in the process of litigation, the art of negotiations, the subtle details of how to present your case to the insurance company in a way that will maximize its value?
In short, does he care enough and respect you enough to take the time to help you understand what is going on? Does he tell you both the good and the bad, even if he knows you may not like what he tells you?
I said the dollar rules today and for insurance companies, defendants, and your employer, this is often the case. The less they pay you, the better it is for them.
However, the opposite is not always true for your personal injury attorney. A higher award amount for your case does not always translate into more money for your lawyer. Sometimes the extra time, hard work, and investment in expenses make your best interests different from the interests of your lawyer.
So it all comes back to where we started; you must be able to trust your lawyer beyond a shadow of a doubt. You must know in your heart that he is honest, is protecting your interests, and is telling you the entire truth. You must know that your lawyer will do what is best for you, even though it may cause him to lose money.
At Stillman and Friedland, our attorneys and staff live by this principle of trust.
A faith and belief in doing what is right, even when the only person who really knows the difference is the lawyer is key. This faith in something higher than man — call it religion, call it God, call it your Creator, is how I know that He is watching when no one else is.
Don’t misunderstand me, many people do what is right, without any higher faith than a belief in humanity, yet I began this discussion with the question: How can you be sure?
How can you know if a person has true faith? You know by the way he relates to you, by the way he treats others around him. You will know by how he talks to you, respects you, takes the time to help you understand your rights, your case, and explains what is truly best for you, no matter how it affects him.
These values must be nurtured and transmitted to everyone at the firm you are working with. If these values are there, you will know it, and you will see it in everyone who works at that law firm.
When you know what to look for and look clearly, you will know when you have chosen the right firm.
At Stillman and Friedland, we are that firm and are at your service to work for your best interests and only yours — all of the time.
Stillman & Friedland