There is a firm in Chicago that represents a high volume of injured workers.  I get more calls from people who have had a bad experience with them than anyone else.  Of course they are not a firm I would ever recommend and are not a part of our state wide network of attorneys.  Their main partner has called me at least five times over the years asking me to send him business.  I have let him know that he does not meet my selection criteria.
There have been numerous times when a caller has told me something outrageous that their lawyer has done and I’ve been able to guess correctly that it was this group.  Usually it’s that they don’t return phone calls or explain anything to their clients or the lawyer that was working on their case quit and a new lawyer took over, but this happened multiple times.  Their worst common offense is promising that the client will get a huge amount of money – they do this to get them to sign up – only to never live up to that bravado.
But probably the worst thing I’ve heard about them came from a recent caller.  His case has been going on for years and there have been lots of customer service problems.  That’s to be expected with this firm.  The injury is quite severe and according to the caller, he was told in September that the case was settled.  He wasn’t thrilled with it, but assumed there was nothing he could do.  They told him to expect them to send settlement contracts to his house in a week or two.
And that’s the last he heard from them.  He’s called them multiple times to find out what happened.  Never got a call back.  Was always told that the attorney was busy.
So finally he did something he shouldn’t have done and called the opposing attorney.  That lawyer shouldn’t have talked to him, but did.  He said that he sent the contracts to the worker’s attorney in October and has been following up too to find out what’s going on without a returned phone call.  He finally tracked down the lawyer at the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission and was told that they “lost the contracts.” He was either too embarrassed or too busy to call and ask for new contracts.
The defense lawyer said that he sent new contracts weeks ago.  Don’t you think that any normal person would be rushing to get them to the client?  First off, that’s how they get paid.  Second, they dropped the ball, big time, and should want to make things right.  But if you know this firm, you know that they really don’t seem to care about their clients at all.
Now they have a client that wants to sue them and/or file an ethical complaint against them.  One day these guys will lose their license to practice law because you can’t keep on screwing people over and get away with it forever.
He still doesn’t’ have his contract and unfortunately there isn’t anything we can do for him.  I told him to show up at their office and catch the lawyer walking in or out if he won’t see him.  This is his life.  He deserves so much better.

By Michael Helfand