I get a ton of sales calls, mostly from doctors and physical therapists who don’t care about their patients. They’ll gladly endorse me, without knowing anything about me, if I agree to send my clients their way. It’s a tit for tat that I’ve never taken part in.
The other day I got a call from a 662 area code and the called ID said “Union Trade” so I had a feeling it was another sales call. This one was a little different as Lisa, the woman on the phone, said that she represents the United Auto Workers Union and that they are looking for attorneys to send their clients to. She said the ones they recommend have not been doing a good job and they surveyed their members to see who they liked working for and my name was mentioned.
This all sounded true and flattering so I listened some more. She asked me to send 45 business cards so they could be distributed. She said they wanted to give out three names so members would have a choice. It all sounded on the up and up.
She then said my name would be in their referral directory for members, but to off set costs they wanted each recommended person to take out an ad for $375.00.
So it was, as suspected, a sales scam. If I don’t pay the money, I’m not worth of recommendation.
I love unions, but find it sad that this is how they really work. There isn’t someone looking out for the best interests of the members to make the union strong and the monthly dues they charge worth it. I could get recommended if I paid for this ad just as I could get recommended if I wined and dined the union steward or other higher ups.
If you are in a union, hopefully it’s a strong one. But if they tell you that you have to work with a certain firm or these other firms are highly regarded, just know that it’s likely because some money has changed hands at some point. Do your own research and ask tough questions before you hire any attorney.