A caller to my office the other day wanted to know my opinion on the lawyer she had been talking to.  I hadn’t heard of him, but did notice that he had only been licensed for around four years.  That doesn’t mean he doesn’t know what he’s doing, but at the same time, it doesn’t speak well to his experience.
But his youth wasn’t why I told her that she had the wrong firm.  She relayed to me that he instructed her to keep on talking to the insurance company, even if he filed a claim on her behalf.  What?!?!?!?
The whole point of hiring an attorney is to navigate the system for you, answer your questions, represent your interests and allow you to focus on your health.  Nothing we say can be used to hurt your case.  Anything you say can be used against you if your case goes to trial.
Point is that you shouldn’t be talking to the insurance company and no work comp lawyer in their right mind would be advising you to do so.
It’s really such a bizarre piece of advice that I’m not even really sure what he could be thinking.  The case had been accepted, but her TTD benefits were delayed.  He should have been the one on the phone figuring out what the problem is and/or filing a trial motion and a petition for penalties and fees.
It would be like going to a restaurant and being asked to do the cooking.  What’s the point of that?
The sad thing is that while Illinois workers’ compensation can be a challenging area of law, success as an attorney comes down to actually just doing your job.  For some they don’t do it because they are burned out.   Others try to make their paralegal or secretary handle most of the heavy lifting.  Some are just so overloaded with cases because they will take on any claim that walks through the door that they don’t have the organizational skills to handle that much work.  And still others have a problem because they have such high lawyer turnover (should tell you what type of firm it is if attorneys keep quitting) that nobody seems to have a handle on what is going on with any of the cases.
Whatever the reason, it’s not your problem and is certainly not something you should deal with.  We don’t promise a result, but in creating a state wide network of hard working lawyers, we don’t see these types of problems.  And usually that means great success for whoever we are representing.

We are workers’ compensation attorneys who help people with Illinois work injuries anywhere in IL via our statewide network of attorneys. Contact us and we will answer your questions or find the right lawyer for your situation.

By Michael Helfand