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Advertising Your Rights

e-rose-kasweck

by E. Rose Kasweck

You’ve probably seen us on billboards; taxi toppers; on television. If you’re reading this blog right now, it’s probably because you follow our social media or clicked on a link that was in the top results of your google search. We’re everywhere, but we’re just one of many law firms vying for your attention (and there are a lot of law firms).

Many people look down on lawyer advertisements. Probably, in large part, because they’re so pervasive.

And, because choosing a lawyer to represent you in your time of need is one of the most important decisions you may have to make in your life, it shouldn’t come down to something as fleeting as a 15 second spot during the local news. It’s not the same level of risk as trying out a new brand of fabric softener because you saw a commercial with a cute dog in it.

I understand why it can make some people uncomfortable.

A family member recently asked me whether I thought lawyer advertising did more harm or good, and though I had to think about it for a second, I believe it has done much more good in the long run. You may think it’s hokey or it’s cheap or that it perpetuates the idea that lawyers are greedy ambulance-chasers. But would you even be aware of all the good a lawyer can do for you, and the variety of lawyers out there, if it weren’t for the ads?

Our firm doesn’t just advertise our services; we work to educate the public.

I think people are much more aware of their rights now than they would be in absence of lawyer advertising and marketing. The insurance companies get to advertise after all. But we all now know (thanks to your friendly neighborhood advertising lawyer) that trusting in an insurance company to do the right thing when it’s time for them to pay out is a folly.

People need lawyers to stand up for their rights and make sure they’re getting fair compensation for their injuries. We need lawyers to avoid any legal pitfalls; to help us avoid doing something out of ignorance that will come back to hurt us. For example, we all now know that it’s inadvisable to give a recorded statement or sign a release without consulting an attorney first. Why do we know that? We know it because we’ve seen and heard these lawyer ads countless times.

Before lawyers began advertising their services and informing you about your rights via television ads, billboards and the like, how would you know what to do if you had been injured? Maybe you knew someone who was a lawyer or who had used a lawyer in the past. They might be able to advise you…or they might not. Or, in the chaos and whirlwind of dealing with what may be one of the worst things that ever happened to you, and expecting your insurance company to treat you fairly, you might not even think to ask an attorney for help.

What are your rights? What should you do after an accident if you’ve been injured? These are important things to know. They could make a life-altering difference to you.

With the internet and advertisements, choosing a lawyer may still be a difficult process, but at least you know what’s out there.

And while a photo of a bunch of smiling faces and a 1-800 number isn’t necessarily helpful in choosing a law firm, it does help to remind you of your rights. There are many lawyers who have the expertise and the willingness to help. And while we do hope our firm will be the one you trust in your time of need, no matter who choose to represent you, you do not have to go it alone. In the end, that’s the most important message of all.

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