Can You Actually Trust the “Friendly” Witness to Your Car Accident?
Picture this: You’ve just been in a serious wreck and a helpful bystander appears and offers to document the accident scene. He or she seems to be on your side, leaving no stone unturned as they snap pictures and videos of the wreckage. Your emotions are probably running high, so you’re in a vulnerable state, just relieved to have someone to help you navigate those stressful hours after the crash.
However, this “good Samaritan” might be a wolf in sheep’s clothing; someone hired by an attorney to illegally approach accident victims in a covert bid to secure their business. These individuals can take on many roles, whether it’s eyewitness, tow truck driver, or insurance rep, but their goal is always the same: To sing the praises of the attorney who hired them so that you’ll choose that lawyer to handle your case.
Unfortunately, these unscrupulous lawyers are often ill-suited to represent you, prioritizing profits over making sure you get the best possible outcome. As such, they may rush to settle your case, even if the payout falls far below the amount you deserve.
Additionally, these attorneys are breaking the law as they are engaging in illegal solicitation. Bottomline: an attorney who is willing to commit a crime to secure your business isn’t someone you can trust.
What Is Illegal Solicitation?
There are some lawyers in the state who will employ so-called “runners” and “cappers” to monitor police scanners, first responder communications, and Twitter feeds for traffic collision dispatches and other emergencies. These individuals will then rush to the scene, adopt the role of a helpful tow truck driver or friendly witness, and begin “assisting” the victim by taking pictures and videos of the wreckage.
They will also share information about “their attorney,” boasting about bumper settlements and impressive results. This performance is intended to lure the victim into signing a retainer agreement with that attorney. In return for their efforts, these ambulance chasers will usually receive kickbacks in the form of untraceable cash payments from a portion of your case.
This practice isn’t just unethical, it’s also illegal. In Nevada, attorneys who solicit someone to hire, employ, or retain them in exchange for compensation are committing a serious crime. If you fall for their act, you might be stuck with incompetent or inadequate legal representation. Insurers are often aware of these dishonest attorneys and may even label such claims as suspicious, assigning the case to their Special Investigations Unit, leading to delays or the outright denial of your claim.
Speak to a Car Accident Attorney in Las Vegas Today
After a wreck, you deserve an attorney who will fight tirelessly to help you secure a favorable outcome. While some unscrupulous lawyers will go to extreme lengths to get your business, those same attorneys will put in minimal effort when it’s time to start building and negotiating your case.
At Maier Gutierrez & Associates, we give every claim the attention it deserves. Not only can we help investigate the wreck and gather the necessary evidence to support your case, but we can also provide tenacious representation throughout proceedings. You can trust our legal team to practice with integrity and professionalism from day one. Call us today at 702-629-7900 or head over to our contact page HERE to request a free case review with a Nevada car accident attorney.