Why You Need a Lawyer Case Study #2: What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You…
We have a client that is a professional engineer. We will call him Edgar. Edgar does great work. High quality. Reasonably priced. And Edgar is a sweetheart of a guy to deal with.
About 4 years ago, Edgar was sued along with about a dozen other contractors and subcontractors for some alleged construction defects on a big project. At that time, Edgar did not have a lawyer in his corner that he could discuss this lawsuit with. And that is unfortunate.
Because even though Edgar had insurance that could have paid for a lawyer to defend him and could have paid in the event Edgar is responsible for any of the defects, Edgar did not tell his insurance company about this lawsuit.
Edgar did not know that his insurance policy required prompt notice of claims.
Instead, Edgar wrote to the lawyer representing the property owner and explained in detail why Edgar was not responsible for the problems the owner was experiencing. Having heard nothing further, Edgar assumed the case was closed. Edgar did not know that it was a bad idea to have communications directly with the lawyer who represents somebody who is suing you.
The case was not closed.
And when Edgar and I met about two years later, he casually mentioned these court documents he kept receiving “even though I am out of the case”. So I looked into the case, and sure enough the case was still going strong. And Edgar was very much still “in the case”, even though no lawyer had been hired to look out for his interests during the first two years of litigation. Edgar did not know that a lawsuit needs a timely response with the court to avoid potentially being defaulted.
Edgar hired us to defend him in the lawsuit and also to obtain coverage for the claim from his insurance company. But by then it was too late.
Edgar did not know that by failing to promptly notify his carrier, he would lose all of the coverage for which he had been paying premiums for years.
Had Edgar had our business lawyer on retainer plan when he was sued, Edgar could have simply called us or emailed us the lawsuit and we would have helped him give the proper, timely notice to his insurance company. In fact, under our Business Lawyer on Retainer Plans, we offer to serve as your company’s Registered Agent so that we receive notice of all lawsuit and legal claims before you do. Edgar did not know about our Business Lawyer on Retainer plans.
Edgar did not know that this one simple mistake would end up costing him tens of thousands of dollars in attorneys’ fees and potential exposure to liability for the defects. Luckily for you, you receive these emails and you know that for as little as $10 PER DAY, you could have a trusted business and legal advisor in your corner to handle these issues for you when they come up. Call our office at (561) 361-8700 to sign up for our Business Lawyer on Retainer Access Plan today.