How American Association for Justice trucking lawyers are making our roads safer and saving lives
This month marks the 10th anniversary of the AAJ Truck Accident Lawyer Litigation Group. This is a group of almost 500 lawyers. Some of the most successful truck lawyers from around the country are members of this group. It is considered one of the top two most successful litigation groups in the American Association for Justice, which in turn is the nation’s largest association of lawyers serving the public, with more than 50,000 lawyer members.
As a past-president of the AAJ Truck Accident Lawyer Litigation Group, I want to wish us all a “Happy Birthday.” We’ve come a very long way since my good friend, and now law partner in the Truck Accident Attorneys Roundtable, Michael Leizerman, founded this litigation group 10 years ago. Michael went on to write the three volume treatise “Litigating Truck Accident Cases” for West Publishing, and he and I have developed a very strong friendship, that has grown over many legal seminars and panels together in dozens of states over the past decade.
During the past decade, the Truck Accident Lawyer Litigation Group membership has exploded. But what does this mean? I firmly believe that this group has been responsible for elevating the practice of trucking litigation in America today, and the lawyers in this group have helped make our roads safer.
When I joined the group, George Bush was President. At the time, less than 1% of the trucks on our roads were being inspected (still roughly true today). And let’s just say it was quite clear that the government on the federal level seemed less inclined to address the issue of trucking safety, even though roughly 1 in 4 trucks on the road were in an incredibly dangerous, out-of-service condition and even though over 5,000 innocent Americans were killed every year in truck accidents.
AAJ’s Truck Litigation Group has tried to fill the need vacated by sometimes years of lax federal enforcement, and very weak enforcement on the state and local level caused by strained financial resources and sometimes the lack of knowledge of law enforcement in smaller communities. Our lawyers have filled a huge safety gap, and our truck accident legal education seminars and programs have had record attendance. The results have been cited over the years in defense publications and seminars.
Ten years ago, we wanted to make sure that this was a group led by people who would give, not take. We wanted to create a group that was truly committed to preventing truck accidents and making things better on our roads and safer for our families.
I hope, that with this group’s continued effort to education and safety, that our next ten years are as bright as our past ten years.