My husband is an attorney.
I feel like I should also have my JD.( Juris Doctorate) since we were newly-weds during the three long years of law school. In any event, I feel like a walking advertisement and “mythbuster”, if you will, on his behalf.
You see, he is a personal injury attorney and with most of the P.I. lawyers, they tend to get a bad rep. But in reality, my husband has integrity, is honest, and is not an “ambulance chaser.” He defends our right to sue and seek justice on civil matters.
After seeing many family and friends post their car wrecks and other personal woes on social media and cringing with “LORD HAVE MERCY, NO! DON’T SAY THAT!” I decided to compile a list on the top eight things your attorney and or future attorney wants you to know. Because let’s be honest- one day you will get in wreck, or be sued, and/or need legal counsel.
8 Things Your Attorney Wants You to Know
1. DO NOT post your legal woes on social media.
Never. Never Never. Car wreck? Send the pics to your lawyer, and not your Instagram story. When you post on social media, the Facebook experts jump in, and your harmless comment, “It could have been worse,” or “Thank God we are O.K!” will come back to haunt you when opposing counsel who represents the insurance company pulls up your social media account. “Ma’am you said you were ok, right?” When in fact, you are out of work due to back or neck injuries. It happens. Trust me. Stick with cat memes. People seem to like those.
2. In the event you find yourself in a car accident, CALL THE POLICE.
No matter what. Always get a police report. The insurance companies are not here to help you. They are here to take your premiums, and not pay out. That’s how they make money.
3. PSA -If you’re involved in a wreck and have car seats, THROW THEM AWAY!
They are no good. Toss those things in the trash. Buy new ones, but keep the receipt and submit them to the responsible party’s insurance carrier.
4. If you are in a car accident and it is your fault and you get sued, don’t panic.
You will be served papers stating that you are being sued. Call your insurance company and send them the papers. Your insurance company likely has to provide you an attorney and will defend you (and pay up to your policy limits to resolve the legal dispute.)
5. Hire a lawyer quickly after an incident.
The sooner the better. If it involves an accident, there is important evidence that needs to be gathered and preserved. Also know that personal injury lawyers do not get paid until the case settles or goes to a trial jury with a verdict in your favor. You read it correctly. These guys and gals don’t get paid until you do. So in the event your case loses in the courts, after all those months of work, research, expert testimony, depositions,and travel etc… your lawyer works for F-R-E-E. So please know, they are working VERY hard on your behalf, or else they don’t eat dinner.
6. You aren’t a law expert because you watch television.
Although you may mean well, most attorneys find television dramas centered around the law or even movies for that matter, absolutely annoying and a far cry from the reality. Just because your Aunt loves Law and Order and has seen every episode doesn’t make her an expert on the law. Except My Cousin Vinny. It’s a classic. #pontiactempest
7. It’s not a bad thing to sue someone.
Suing has become this negative buzz word in our generation. It happens. It’s like a speeding ticket in a way, and sometimes can get more serious. When lives are taken, or serious injuries are sustained, you want to keep your right to sue. Our founding fathers listed the right to a trial by jury within the Bill of Rights— the first 10 amendments to the United States Constitution—for a reason (it’s number 7). You should never consider voting to give it up or limit your rights to sue in civil matters.
8. Jury Duty- You should do this.
It’s your right and your duty. You would want YOU on your jury, right? It’s surprising how many people skip out on jury duty. Full disclosure- I have been called twice. Once I was a student, and once while we were already scheduled to be out of town. So no, I have never sat on a jury pool. I have, though, attended a few trials and highly recommend the experience.
I feel like I left out that my husband and I have other lawyer friends that work both in defense, personal injury, family and more. It’s a job, and at times a very tough one. Though they may be on opposing sides, they respect one another as professionals.
And no matter what life throws at you, one day you too will find yourself needing legal counsel. I hope this list is helpful to you and others when that day comes, until then, this session is adjourned.