WHAT I AM WRITING HERE ONLY PERTAINS TO ONE TEXAS OFFICE OF WAYNE WRIGHT,LLP AND NO PLACE ELSE. I DO NOT HAVE ANY EXPERIENCE WITH HIS OPERATIONS OUTSIDE OF TEXAS.IT DOES NOT PERTAIN TO THE ATTORNEY PERSONALLY BECAUSE I NEVER SAW HIM OR TALKED WITH HIM, HE PERSONALLY NEVER HANDLED MY CASE AND I NEVER ESTABLISHED A CLIENT-ATTORNEY RELATIONSHIP WITH HIM PERSONALLY. He is separate and apart from the limited liability partnership mentioned here which is the subject of this report, even if they do have the same name.
The following events happened in a town in Texas that could have been in Austin, Corpus Christi, Houston or San Antonio:
TORT REFORM WAS ENACTED IN 2003 AT THE BEQUEST OF BIG INSURANCE THAT RUNS TEXAS SO THAT BIG CLIENTS GET AWAY WITH BIG RIP-OFFS FROM SMALL VICTIMS and LAWYERS and PARALEGALS get hurt as well.
That said, I am not sure how much of this bad feeling I got about this personal injury settlement was attributable to TORT REFORM and how much is attributable to an attitude of elitism and get this case over with as fast as possible...
I chose the firm of Wayne Wright, LLP to represent me.
There is the usual disclaimer on this web site which I should have read before I signed the line so there WAS CONTRIBUTORY NEGLIGENCE on my PART when I chose a Personal Injury Attorney Firm!
"Information contained on this web site about recent trials, verdicts and settlements should not be used to estimate the value of any future case. Each case is unique and the result obtained in one case is not a prediction of the success of similar cases."- disclaimer that you see on the Wayne Wright,LLP site.
I was injured in a collision in a certain Texas city. I can not give the particuliars of this accident and certainly not the names of the parties involved because of the non-disclosure agreement I believe that I signed.
Just the fact that it happened and a police report was filed and there WERE hospital bills.
I called my first choice to represent me in the Personal Injury Suit which always follows auto accidents ( or should) which was the Houston law firm of Payne and James which had done an AMAZING job for me in a traffic accident suit I had in 1993! GREAT work from an AMAZING attorney named Lisa Lightfoot, I believe. She really cared and I wanted them to represent me exclusively in ANY personal injury case I had in the future. The paralegal guy who interviewed me was sharp too.
When I tried to call them this time,2007, however, I was unable to contact anyone (about five times in three days to be exact) and if they are still in business, you couldn't have proved it by me! I figured that they didn't want to do business in the city where I was injured anymore.TORT REFORM,probably....
So I remembered an attorney ad on daytime TV and saw the same attorney plastered all over an old telephone book I happened to have around the house. the TV ad showed an actress portraying a grief-stricken young
showed a young woman saying," I got the settlement I deserved."
And Wayne Wright,LLP was the name of the firm.
In TV ad, I saw someone identified as Wayne Wright, attorney at law, get his stetson hat on his head and grab his briefcase like he was going to charge out and beat that cash out of the tortfeasors right then and there... Well, I KNOW that things do not happen in any court quite like THAT,but it impressed me that here is an older, white-haired attorney wearing folksy suspenders, standing there with his lawbook like Billy Graham with his Bible and I don't think the pose was unintentional ---a brilliant marketing ploy by the way. He looked for the world like a kindly, good old boy, soft-spoken country lawyer, one of the kind that everybody overlooks and SUDDENLY, the case is OVER and HE WON! and the big city shysters and slicksters sit around in the courtroom shaking their heads at what they possibly could have done wrong...
I SHOULD HAVE DONE MY LEGAL RESEARCH! I wasn't expecting Mr. Wright to handle my case, after all , it APPEARS that he is based in Arizona and this isn't about him PERSONALLY anyway. I am sure he is a good attorney if he even still sees clients anymore. He must be doing something right because he is still in business.
My complaint is that TWO lawyers in TEXAS handled my case and I don't think either one of them did it particuliarly well.
An attorney at law instead of a paralegal did the initial intake interview. This was a King of the Komb Overs kind of guy who asked me how I had found out about the law firm. I should have said it was a referral INSTEAD of telling him that I got it through a "TV ad."
It indicated that I was a Jerry Springer kind of person since that particuliar comercial used to air close to the Jerry Springer show and those folks who appear on that show and their adoring fans aren't the brightest crayolas in the box. I noticed that he appeared to be formulating an instant stereotype but I figured, well, he's the lawyer I am going to be working with so I told him the truth. You are supposed to tell your lawyer the truth. That is, if he or she is working for you and NOT for the insurance company. I wasn't too sure WHO he was REALLY working for the entire time I was talking to him.
Maybe I should have considered that he IS working for the insurance company since that is where his fee is ultimately going to come from. SO WHO IS THE ULTIMATE CLIENT HERE? WHOSE INTERESTS ARE GOING TO BE BEST REPRESENTED HERE?
INSURANCE RUNS TEXAS.
I understood him to say that if I had medical bills, other than the ones from the hospital, to submit for the insurance claim that I MIGHT get a better settlement. Well, I was HURT and had diagnostic evidence that I actually HAD sustained injuries and was not faking it. In fact, a year after that accident, I am STILL hurting on occasion! When I told him that the treatments had helped but not that much, I was told that I would have to see another practitioner to get more money but by that time, the money allotted by the Insurance company for this was ALL GONE!
SO I went to practitioners and got the treatments and THE TREATMENTS APPARENTLY ATE UP THE INSURANCE SETTLEMENT! I think they helped me somewhat but basically I was evaluated and my condition ws diagnosed a little better than at the Emergency room.
Then work on my case apparently STOPPED.
I called over to the law firm's office and another Attorney, who was originally a practitioner from another Texas city, was suddenly talking with me. He wasn't my original attorney. What did he know or care about me? And even worse, there was not the client-attorney relationship that I had with the previous attorney and even that was marginal...
To me, an attorney-client relationship is all about the fiduciary aspects and trust... I did not feel that this was present. They weren't expecting me to know about a fiduciary relationship much less be able to spell or pronounce it correctly.
IS THIS THEIR USUAL PROCEDURE?
The second attorney seemed to think I was some low-class sit on the porch,functionally illiterate, beer swilling, socioeconomic dreg from the gutters or hillbilly hell of society just wanting a huge settlement so I could stay home and watch Jerry Springer on Teeee Veeeee ( and the Wayne Wright commercials geareed for THOSE kind of peple, I guess...)The "talking down to the dumb and ignorant in simple terms and frequent discreet glimpses at the watch to let you know he has better things to do than to talk with trash like YOU!"
I would like to think that because of TORT REFORM that I did NOT get the settlemen I thgouth I deserved... The idea of a personal injury settlement is to restore the person to wholeness as much as possible before the accident!
They didn't say too much when the insurance adjuster wanted to total out our vehicle and when we didn't fall for THAT con job ( Watch out for ANY LYING,CHEATING TEXAS INSURANCE ADJUSTER!), we didn't get enough to fix our vehicle or even to get it diagnosed.
The driver of the vehicle received an unbelieveavly SMALL settlement and NOTHING for pain and suffering.
I was told I would be getting $250 more than what I got and what I eventually got was abysmally low!
Apparently if you admit that you saw the TELEVISION COMMERCIAL, you are screwed over... since you are presumed to be too ignorant to know how a personal injury lawsuit works...
I know from previous automobile accidents that bills are settled with the hospital and the EMS for pennies on the dollar and who knows what happens to the difference????
I would like to blame TORT REFORM for this but I don't quite feel I got what was coming to me in this case.
I ALSO DIDN'T LIKE THE "SILENCE 'UNTIL WE STARVE OUT THE MALINGERING TRASH' tactics that were apparently used on us in attempts to coerce us into a settlement... I had to call to see what was going on...
It seemed like they were hoping for laches on our part to run out the statute of limitations and so nothing would be paid to us.
When I also tried to call Wayne Wright's office in an attempt to learn about filing for Social Security Disability, I was put in touch with a very loud, rude,threatening, heavily accented person who could barely speak English and screamed at me because I could not hear them very well...Idon't know exaxctly where my call was actually handled....
Was this from a call center in India or was it Tijuana?
I couldn't tell what sort of accent it was...Since it MAY have been Texas, perhaps it was Spanish but I have never heard the language sounding uglier!
My Spanish is excellent because my father was born in Mexico but I won't be screamed at rudely and by anybody, and certainly no one from an attorney's office!
I can not say more without giving away who I am but suffice it to say, that if that obnoxious, odious person thought they were dealing with some peon who wanted something for nothing and is used to be yelled at and belittled, they were SADLY mistaken...
I am wondering and I do believe that I would have gotten the same result no matter WHAT local law firm I used to "represent" me...
Wayne Wright stated in his law firm commercial that he treated his clients with dignity and respect.... Maybe HE did but this place that has franchised his name like Kentucky Fried Chicken.... well, not so much.
I AM URGING PERSONS WHO HAVE BEEN INJURED IN A PERSONAL INJURY CASE ( PREFERABLY A VEHICLE WRECK BECASUE THAT IS THE ONLY THING MOST OF THESE LAW FIRMS WILL TAKE) TO USE DUE DILIGENCE WHEN TRYING TO FIND A FIRM TO REPRESENT THEM AND TO NOT TELL THE INTAKE PARALEGAL OR ATTORNEY THAT THEY PICKED THE COMPANY BECAUSE THEY SAW IT ON TV.
I found out that it DOES make a difference.
AGAIN, BECAUSE OF THE VICTIM RIP-OFF THAT ALLEGED TORT REFORM HAS TURNED OUT TO BE, I AM NOT SURE THAT ANY OTHER LAW FIRM WOULD HAVE GOTTEN ME A BETTER SETTLEMENT BUT YOU HAD BETTER BELIEVE I WILL DO A BETTER JOB SHOULD THERE EVER BE A NEED TO SELECT ANOTHER PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY FIRM!
There was a slight problem with cashing the check which was NOT written out on a Wayne Wright, LLP checking account. Because it RESEMBLED a personal check, I guess it was difficult to cash but I persisted and eventually got the money.
I HAD A RATHER BAD FEELING ABOUT THIS PLACE FROM START TO FINISH AND I AM NOT SURE I WILL USE THEM AGAIN. FOR SURE I WON'T RECOMMEND THEM TO ANYBODY.
I think I will use a firm with folks a little more down to earth who WILL handle my cases and who WILL treat me with dignity and respect.