Choosing the Best Lawyer

Car Turn Signal

My granddaddy used to say the only thing a blinker meant for sure was that the taillight bulb worked. I didn’t realize it, but he was teaching me not to assume that just because the blinker was on that the driver would turn.

Hiring a lawyer only because you see him or her on a billboard is assuming that that lawyer is qualified. All a billboard proves is the last month’s billboard invoice is paid. Don’t trust billboards and blinkers, you might end up with a mess on your hands.

If you trust that the driver is front of you is going to turn just because the blinker is on, you might get hurt in a wreck. If you trust that a lawyer will do a good job because of a billboard, you might find yourself stuck without the help you need.

Make sure you hire based on qualifications, experience, and results, not billboards.

Free Declaration Page Review

Did you know our lawyers will review your automobile insurance declarations page for free and give you advice about your current coverage? No charge, no cost, and no obligation. You don’t even have to come in to see us.

Are TV lawyers charging unethical fees?

The following is an excerpt from an actual TV personal injury lawyer’s fee agreement or contract.

 Reduction of Medical Bills. Liens and Subrogation Amounts. The parties agree that upon Client’s consent, Attorneys will attempt to mitigate all medical bills and subrogation amounts due and owing. Any resultant savings will be divided between Client and Attorneys.

 Translation: After TV lawyer settles your case (because we know he or she won’t go to trial), said TV lawyer’s staff will attempt to negotiate down your medical or subrogation expenses.  Per the agreement, TV layer gets ½ of any savings.

 The Alabama State Bar has now banned this practice because, essentially, TV lawyer was getting paid twice on the same dollars.  If your lawyer has to be regulated by the Alabama State Bar to keep from ripping you off, do you really think that lawyer has your best interest at heart?  If you prefer lawyers whose trial skills are superior to their jingle writing abilities, call Hodges Trial Lawyers.

Verdict in Defective Constructive Case

Our firm received a Jury verdict in favor of a deserving client this week.  The case was tried before a Jury of twelve (12) Madison County residents and the Honorable Donna Pate.  Jeremiah reports that the Jury was very attentive in doing their critical civic duty.  He also reports that this was the first trial he has ever been involved in where the Court thanked the lawyers on both sides for being professional and courteous.  Our client was grateful that the Jury found in his favor and that this case finally has come to an end.  As it did in this case, litigation sometimes can drag on for several years.  It can be a tiresome process to be a Plaintiff, but it is encouraging when a Jury sees it your way.

 The case involved a breach of contract and negligent construction claim filed on behalf of our client against his contractor.  We understand these issues and know the experts needed to handle these matters.  If we can assist you with a breach of contract claim in Alabama or Tennessee, please call to schedule a consultation with one of our lawyers.

Guest Passenger Law in Alabama

 Most people are unaware that if you are a passenger in a vehicle and the driver of the vehicle negligently causes a wreck, you are not allowed to sue that driver. This is called the “Guest Passenger” Statute. The Guest-Passenger Statute is unique to Alabama and essentially states that when you choose to ride in a car with someone, you assume the risk that the driver might negligently cause a wreck. Therefore, you are not allowed to recover.

 However, there are exceptions to this rule. The traditional exception to this rule is if you pay someone for the ride. For example, if you are in a taxi or an Uber ride, the Guest Passenger Statute does not apply to you. Even if you have just given someone gas money for the ride, that can be sufficient to overcome the Guest Passenger Statute.

 Just this past week, the Supreme Court of Alabama deepened this exception to the Guest Passenger Statute. The Supreme Court stated that as long as the Passenger conferred a tangible benefit to the driver of the vehicle, the Guest Passenger Statute does not apply. In this particular case, the driver and passenger were going grocery shopping. The passenger was in the vehicle for the purpose of helping the driver with her grocery shopping because the driver was old and needed help completing her grocery shopping. While the Supreme Court recognized that no money was exchanged, they found the Guest Passenger statute was inapplicable because the passenger’s job of helping with the grocery shopping was a benefit to the driver.

 So while this law may seem harsh and unfair at times, it is encouraging to see the Supreme Court recognizing more and more exceptions to this unique Alabama concept.