“To listen well is as powerful a means of communication and influence as to talk well.” — Chief Justice John Marshall
One of the most common complaints made about the legal profession is the lack of communication clients receive from their personal injury attorneys.
Or perhaps, the client’s only communication regarding their personal injury case is from the lawyer’s support staff. The Louisiana Supreme Court has held that “[p]roper communication with clients is essential to maintain public confidence in the profession.” See La. State Bar Association v. St. Romain, 560 So. 2d. 820, 824 (La. 1990). Indeed, the duty to communicate is so fundamental that a lawyer cannot delegate this responsibility to lay employees. Id. (citing La. State Bar Association v. Edwins, 540 So. 2d 294 (La. 1989)).
In addition, the Louisiana Rules of Professional Conduct Rule 1.4 require the attorney to communicate with their clients in five important ways:
- A lawyer has duty to communicate to their client in regards to any situation that requires a client’s consent. For example, if adverse party offers a settlement to your attorney your attorney must inform you of the settlement and advise you if the settlement is in your best interests based on the facts of your case.
- The lawyer is required to communicate to the client the means with which they will obtain the objectives of your case. So the attorney must discuss the plan in which he or she will “win” your case for you.
- Your attorney must update you regularly on your case and give you the status of any new developments.
- Your attorney is required to “promptly” respond to any reasonable request for information from the client.
- And last, but not least, Rule 1.4 requires the lawyer to communicate any limitation of his representation when the lawyer knows the assistance requested by the client is forbidden by the Louisiana Rules of Professional Conduct. For instance, if the client expects his lawyer to threaten illegal conduct against an adverse party the lawyer must immediately explain why they cannot make such a threat.
Choose Morris Bart As Your Personal Injury Attorney
The Louisiana Supreme Court and the Louisiana Rules of Professional Conduct take seriously the requirement that lawyers communicate with their clients. At our personal injury law firm, we take communication seriously as well. If you call our firm, one of our personal injury attorneys will respond within 24 hours. If we don’t hear from you, we make sure to make routine update calls just to keep you informed of your personal injury case. We understand that communication is essential and it involves listening and talking to our clients. As shown above, it’s the law and it’s the right thing to do — and we have done it well over 30 years!
If you have been involved in a personal injury accident, please contact the personal injury attorneys at Morris Bart, LLC Attorneys at Law today. We offer a free case evaluation with our personal injury attorneys, who will review the details of your case and advise you on the best approach to getting the compensation you deserve for your personal injury claim.