So How Did You Find Your Attorney? SueEasy!!!

A new legal website is in the making called SueEasy. It apparently hasn’t gone live yet, but let me be the first in the legal blogosphere to shred the idea as incredibly stupid. And further, that any attorney that participates for a personal injury case may be committing legal malpractice.

The story comes via Peter Lattman at the WSJ Law Blog a few days ago who got it from TechCrunch.

The website urges people to contact them with their complaints and post their confidential legal papers, and then attorneys they have never met, spoken with or vetted, will bid for their business and the winner will get the case.

Just think of the trial testimony, regarding conduct that takes place before any attorney-client privilege is created:

Defense Counsel: How did you find your counsel?
Client: I used a website called SueEasy.
Defense Counsel: What is that?
Client: I submit information to a website and lawyers bid for my case.
Defense Counsel: Lawyers you’ve never spoken with?
Client: Yes.
Defense Counsel: So your lawyer bid for your case before ever speaking with you?
Client: Yup.
Defense Counsel: Based on information you submitted before s/he was retained?
Client: Yup
Defense Counsel: And xyz wasn’t in the packet of information you sent in to SueEasy, was it?
Client: No.
Defense Counsel: So your lawyer was asking for this case without even knowing about xyz?
Client: Yes.

This kind of crap, presented ever so briefly here, can easily go on for a half-hour or more, all about how the client used some anonymous website — that pitches how easy it is to sue a company or person — provided limited information, and found an attorney willing to bid on the case on that basis.

If one is looking to distract from the merits of a personal injury case and help drive a nail into its coffin, then using such a website is a great idea.

According to TechCrunch:

The site is kind of a reverse directory for lawyers that’s sure to be a haven for personal injury lawsuits.

The biggest beneficiaries will no doubt be defense lawyers and insurance companies who will have a field day with anyone caught using such a system. Any case that is close on the merits is surely likely to suffer from any halfway decent cross examination.

And I think that any practitioner that uses it should make sure their professional liability premiums are fully paid up. While the client may not know better, the attorney should.

Addendum, 10/24/07:

(Eric Turkewitz is a personal injury attorney in New York)

Links to this post:

is sueeasy the worst lawyer idea ever?
cross posted from new york personal injury law blog: when i first heard about sueeasy, i thought it was an april fool’s joke. but it was october when it first appeared as a development concept (see 10/23/07 post: so how did you find

posted by Eric Turkewitz @ April 18, 2008 9:38 AM

october 25 roundup
lawyer for mothers against drunk driving: better not call yourself mothers against anything else without our say-so [phoenix new times]. ohio insurer agrees to refund $51 million in premiums, but it’s a mutual, so money’s more or less
posted by @ October 25, 2007 1:07 AM

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2 Responses Leave a comment

  • Anonymous 2007.10.23 at 14:59 | Quote

    Defense Counsel: How did you find your counsel?

    Why can’t the defense attorney just say, “Objection, relevance.”

  • Eric Turkewitz 2007.10.23 at 15:18 | Quote

    It will depend on the jurisdiction and how the issue is approached as to whether a judge will let it in.

    But one can (in New York) ask related questions about whether people have met with attorneys and when, so long as the substance of the discussions isn’t breached. And bit by bit one might work backwards to an initial meeting.

    And one can ask about documents and who they were shared with (in this case with non-counsel SueEasy).

    So it might, or might not, come in, depending not only on how you get to the questions, but the jurisdiction, or perhaps, the peculiarities of the individual judge.

    And it seems like a dumb (and wholly unnecessary) risk to take.

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