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Myth: Personal Injury Attorneys are Bottom of the Barrel

The Myth that Personal Injury Attorneys are at the Bottom of the Barrel

Attorneys in my field are often portrayed as the bottom of the barrel – “ambulance chasers” willing to bend the laws and our morals to extort money from health care professionals. Don’t believe me? Look no further than one of this decade’s most popular television series, Breaking Bad, where Saul Goodman fills the image of an unethical and immoral personal injury attorney, ready to follow ambulances all the way to the hospital to score a client. Though his office is adorned with a Statue of Liberty figure and U.S. Constitution wallpaper, in many episodes his conduct is shady at best and illegal at worst.
The Saul Goodman character probably has a large inventory of neck braces, and he is an expert in fitting them to his various clients. He is in many ways the stereotypical “ambulance chaser” attorney. Only in it for the money, he thinks of all sorts of tricks he can use to beat the system and increase his income. He is the type of attorney one conjures up when one thinks about bottom-of-the-barrel attorneys. The term “ambulance chaser” originated from the idea of attorneys following ambulances all the way to the hospital to sign up a case.

Saul Goodman is, of course, just a fictional character. But, unfortunately, this stereotype is precisely what some people think of when they think of personal injury attorneys. That is a shame for many reasons. It makes it much harder to persuade a jury of the legitimacy of a personal injury when the jurors look at the victim’s attorney as an ambulance chaser.

Personal injury attorneys certainly don’t help themselves when they plaster their mugs on billboards and buses and show up on television with ridiculous claims and silly slogans. It’s even worse when the lawyer who shouts at you on television doesn’t even really handle the cases. And perhaps the very worst is when attorneys bombard potential clients with letters, DVDs, and goodie bags the day after a victim has been in a car wreck.

Saul Goodman might like those kinds of behaviors, but hard-working, conscientious lawyers can’t stand it. In fact, conscientious personal injury lawyers hate it the most, because we are the ones who have to try to convince juries that we don’t operate that way. We have to overcome the biases jurors have based upon their observations of a few loud-mouthed Saul Goodman types.

The difference between a personal injury lawyer and a medical malpractice lawyer

I am a personal injury lawyer. I am proud to represent people who have been injured by the carelessness of others. More specifically, I am a medical negligence (or medical malpractice) lawyer. You can think of medical negligence law sort of as a subspecialty or subfield of personal injury law. All medical negligence lawyers are personal injury lawyers, but not all personal injury lawyers are medical negligence lawyers.

My Journey into Medical Malpractice Law

Like many medical malpractice attorneys, I entered the field because I was fascinated by both law and medicine. Ultimately, I chose law school over medical school. After graduating from Harvard Law School and working as a federal prosecutor for a few years, I came to the realization that entering medical malpractice law would allow me to combine my two passions, law and medicine. Malpractice attorneys have the opportunity to interact one on one with amazing clients, learn new medical concepts related to their cases, and then use that information and knowledge to advocate for their clients in court. In many ways, medical malpractice law is more difficult than many other areas of law because it requires detailed knowledge of both medical concepts and legal concepts.

Why Medical Malpractice Law?

Medical malpractice attorneys and personal injury attorneys cannot be completely motivated by money because in these cases, it may take a while to get paid—if they get paid at all. Though many personal injury cases settle soon after a lawsuit is filed, medical malpractice cases can go on for years. How can an attorney be motivated solely by money if he may work for three or four years on a case before he earns a dime? Many would scoff at such an employment offer.

In defense law firms, many attorneys become disenchanted because they never get to know their clients well. They work for hospitals and insurance companies, billing as many hours as possible to maximize profits for the firm. The more hours they bill, the better. I could have worked at one of these huge defense firms – I had multiple offers to do so. However, I chose the side of the victim instead because it enables me to work closely with clients, advocating for the little guy, fighting against Goliath. Medical negligence lawyers must be smart enough to understand some very complicated medical issues and confident enough to plunk down tens (and even hundreds) of thousands of dollars of their own money to finance a case, while taking on some of the wealthiest defendants around and running a risk in every case of earning no fee whatsoever.

Here at the Eisen Law Firm, our focus is not on how much money we can make. Instead, we focus on how we can help clients through some of the most difficult challenges they may ever face. We do not charge a penny for the work we do unless we make a recovery on your behalf. Although there are a number of expenses involved with medical negligence cases, such as consulting experts and filing court documents, The Eisen Law Firm fronts all of those costs. You pay nothing if there is no recovery. We enjoy getting to know our clients, wonderful people who have suffered horrific tragedies, and we are honored to provide services that are often life changing.

If you need a Cleveland medical negligence attorney, contact us today

When we agree to represent you, you will get an ivy-league educated lawyer and his team who will not back down. You will not be charged a penny for the work we do unless we win. And you will not be a number. You will get attorneys who are skilled, experienced, and successful in Medical Malpractice. If you are looking for a trickster, someone who will pull the wool over the eyes of an insurance company to make a buck, please look elsewhere. We will never be confused with the Saul Goodmans of this world.

If you or a loved one was injured due to the negligence of a medical professional, let the Cleveland medical malpractice attorneys at The Eisen Law Firm examine your potential claim. We offer free consultations to give you the opportunity to discuss all possible avenues of recovery with our experienced attorneys. To schedule your free consultation, call 216-687-0900 or contact us online.

December 28, 2017 / Medical Malpractice

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About the Author

The Eisen Law Firm: Focused on Client Service in Ohio.

With a highly selective practice focused on medical negligence cases, the trial attorneys of The Eisen Law Firm help Ohio families recover from the consequences of a doctor or hospital’s negligent mistakes. Because we work only on a few cases at a time, we’re able to concentrate on the details that can make the decisive difference to the outcome and value of your claims.