Intimidated By Contacting An Arizona Car Accident Lawyer? Don't Be...
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Dave Wattel: A roll-up-the-sleeve kind of lawyer
Dave Wattel, an Arizona attorney who has been handling plaintiffs' cases exclusively for over 20 years, says that people should never be intimidated by contacting his firm. He explained why:
We're very approachable. In fact, I dont wear a tie to the office unless Im going to court. Im the roll-up-the-sleeve, work hard every single day like everybody else out there kind of guy. I work hard for my clients and I dont need to impress by wearing a $1,000 suit and tie ensemble. Quite the contrary. I want clients to understand that I am their partner and I will be their friend.
The reason I say that is is because friends and partners dont screw their friends and partners. I am going to do whatever is necessary to make sure that my client, my friend, the partnership that weve developed, not only survives, but thrives. Because if the shoe is on the other foot, thats how I would expect them to deal with me.
The benefits of truly understanding your situation
Wattel is emphatic that he truly must understand a client's situation in order to best serve them. He told us that he's a client's mouthpiece and unless he understands and has essentially walked in their moccasins, he won't know what to do on their behalf. He provided this example:
I tell a story to clients all the time that I buy a pair of shoes at a department store for $100. I walk down the mall to another department store, and there, coincidentally, is the same pair of shoes on sale for $95.
I can afford the extra $5 I've paid, but I feel like I got ripped off. I dont ever want to feel that way and I dont want my clients to feel that way. So the reason I give this information is so that a client understands that when he calls us that, 1) if I can't help him, I'm going to tell him so, 2) I'm not going to lead him down the primrose path to disappointment, and 3) I'm going to give them good, sold free advice to begin with.
The detriments of waiting too long
Getting yourself back on your feet is obviously your number one priority after being involved in an auto accident. However, waiting too long to contact an attorney can be detrimental. Wattel explained why:
If a client does not call early on, they may have screwed up their ability to be made whole on their property damage, because now aftermarket parts are on their vehicle or theyve not been able to pursue the diminished value claim because theres not now enough property damage coverage left after paying the body shop. In addition, they may not have gotten to the appropriate medical providers or theres been a delay in treatment, which an insurance company is going to jump all over down the line. There are many things that should be done from the very beginning and only an experienced attorney is going to be able to guide correctly.
Some insurance companies try to have people sign things that unknowingly waive their rights. Some try to get recorded statements and those statements could be used against the individual down the line. Thats something we protect against early on in representation.
Has your attorney served you well?
Wattel told us that if he thinks he can help somebody out, its with the understanding that he's going to pursue this claim for them so that they dont feel like they got ripped off or taken. He said:
I can very selfishly say at the end of the day that I have served you well and that you are so satisfied with my representation that youre going to tell friends and family about what good attorneys we are if, God forbid, theyre involved in an accident or an injury that requires representation. That is our absolute agenda.
I grew up in the restaurant business where customer service is the mantra, and thats what we follow here. It all comes down to this if youve been injured at the hands of somebody else, well be happy to help you find a way to collect.