Gursten shares how Michigan Auto Law became arguably the premier law firm in Michigan for car crash victims through client service, communication, trial and settlement results
As an auto accident attorney, I care about my profession and how lawyers can do a better job serving our clients. That’s why on May 12 I’ll be a guest speaker for the Vista Legal Consulting Team’s Annual Conference in Chicago, where I’ll discuss the strategies my own law firm, Michigan Auto Law, has used to thrive in the hyper-competitive Detroit and west Michigan legal markets, without television advertising, billboards, radio commercials and the lawyer bus wraps that have become so common in cities like Detroit.
Conference attendees are mostly personal injury attorneys like myself, all of whom want to know about what can make us be better lawyers — from client service to achieving top settlements for our clients.
The secrets to make our law firms thrive in challenging times
For the first part of my presentation, I’ll be answering “How Do You Grow a Personal Injury Law Firm?” by using my own law firm, Michigan Auto Law, as a model and example of how lawyers can shun the ugly legal mills so common among the big advertising law firms and instead prioritize service and communication.
We have been protecting auto accident victims for 50 years. And in those five decades, our law firm has constantly found ethical ways to stand out from the hundreds of lawyers and legal competitors in Michigan. It’s led to our firm more than tripling in size.
How did we do it?
Well, the first thing is to do things differently from everyone else.
In a world where injury lawyers are jumping into the fray of lawyers advertising on television, billboards, radio and bus wraps, trying to sign as many cases as possible so they can “churn and burn” through high-volume settlements, particularly for car accident victims, we’ve gone a different way from the crowd.
The answer is to sign less cases, not more. This allows our own auto attorneys to spend more time working on them. This leads to better communication and happy clients, but it isn’t all touchy-feely. It has also been the biggest reason why we’ve had some of the very best car crash settlements and trial verdicts year after year.
In our own quiet way, we’ve become the go-to law firm for many attorneys around Michigan, and now the country, who will refer to us the people hurt in motor vehicle accidents that they come upon. These attorney referrals are based upon the results we’ve reached for our clients over the years, and that they know the people they refer will receive a level of communication that is generally lacking among the advertiser personal injury law firms.
My message to attorneys is that this is harder than just spending money on television, but it is a superior model for us all. We can do well by doing good for people. It is a better way to engage in the legal profession, and it is not just good for business, but also in how the public sees our profession.
Lawyers need to talk with their own clients, not think they’re too good for them. We need to be more like the companies that are known for great customer service, and less like the stereotypes of lawyers who don’t return phone calls.
In a world where too many auto accident lawyers are racing to the bottom, our greatest opportunities lie in a different direction.
The Vista annual conference runs May 11-12 at the Hilton Chicago/Magnificent Mile Suites. For more information, visit Vistact.com.