Bailey & Greer Responds to Your Frequently Asked Questions
Building an attorney referral network you can trust
Choosing to work with another law firm is not a decision to be made lightly. Bailey & Greer, PLLC understands your concerns; we also want to know that our clients will be in the best possible hands, on occasions when they cannot be in ours. That is why we have created this page of answers to the most frequently asked questions we hear about our attorney referral network. We invite you to peruse this page, and then to contact us if you still have questions, or if you are ready to begin a long-term and fruitful relationship with our firm.
- Are referral fees ethical?
- Why should I refer a case to Bailey & Greer?
- How much work will I have to do as the referring lawyer?
- I don’t feel comfortable taking part of the attorney fee. Will this make me look bad to the client?
- This sounds too good to be true. What are the risks to me as the referring lawyer?
- How do I attract personal injury cases so that I can refer them to you?
- I have worked on a case myself, but need help with taking depositions and trial; can you assist?
- I don’t know anything about personal injury cases. How do I know what cases to refer?
- How much of the attorney fee will I receive?
Discover more about our attorney referral network
Bailey & Greer, PLLC invites you to learn more about our firm, and about what our attorneys do. To meet with our team, or to find about more, please call 901.475.7434, or fill out our attorney referral form.
Are referral fees ethical?
Yes, but the fee arrangement must meet the requirements of Rule of Professional Conduct 1.5(e), which requires that:
(1) the division is in proportion to the services performed by each lawyer or each lawyer assumes joint responsibility for the representation;
(2) the client agrees to the arrangement, and the agreement is confirmed in writing; and
(3) the total fee is reasonable.
Why should I refer a case to Bailey & Greer?
Referring a client to another lawyer is a reflection upon you — even if you do not enter into a referral agreement. When you refer a case, you want to make sure the client has a positive experience and that the client achieves the best possible result. Thus, we take our relationship with referral attorneys very seriously, and we aim to leave the client completely satisfied.
Our goal is simple: do a better job than any other law firm in every aspect of the case. When you refer a case to us, our commitment to excellence and to client satisfaction is a reflection upon you. Here is why you should choose us as your go-to referral source:
- Fewer Cases – We specifically limit the number of cases that we handle so that our attorneys and staff are accessible to each client. Unlike a lot of firms, our lawyers personally know each and every client.
- Aggressive – We strive to push cases toward resolution as quickly as possible. Where many other firms will wait until the last minute to file a case, we often file the case quickly and push for a trial date as soon as is reasonably possible. This typically results in better recoveries for our clients.
- Never Settle for Less – We never recommend settling a case without understanding the full extent of the client’s injuries. The last thing we want to see happen is for a client to accept a low-ball settlement offer only to discovery later that their injuries are more serious and perhaps even permanent.
- Resources – We have the resources to succeed even in the most difficult, complex, and high stakes cases. We have a network of expert witnesses at our disposal and we even have a full-time registered nurse on staff to assist with medical issues.
- Trial Experience and Success – We take cases to trial regularly and we have a great track record for obtaining excellent verdicts. Although statistically most cases will settle, it is imperative to have an experienced trial lawyer in order to achieve a fair settlement.
How much work will I have to do as the referring lawyer?
Referring lawyers can do as little or as much as they prefer. Typically, the referral attorney does no actual work on the case, other than make the introduction between Bailey & Greer and the new client. Of course, if you have a desire to actively participate in the representation, we are always open to such an arrangement. Moreover, even if you do not wish to actively participate, you are welcome to attend hearings, depositions, client meetings, and the trial if you so desire. It’s completely up to you.
If you choose not to be involved with the litigation, rest assured the client will be well taken care of and we will keep you informed about the case. Our firm is designed to handle every aspect of the case, from the initial client meeting to trial if necessary. Our decades of experience means that we know how to make the client feel respected and appreciated.
I don’t feel comfortable taking part of the attorney fee. Will this make me look bad to the client?
The first thing to remember is that referring a case to Bailey & Greer will not increase the total attorney fee charged to the client. In other words, the client will not pay more in attorney fees if the case is referred to us. We make this crystal clear to the new client when forming the relationship. We also explain to our referred clients that the best way to find a competent attorney is by relying upon an attorney that you already trust. The referral lawyer has usually developed a relationship of trust with the client, and wants to maintain that level of trust with the client.
By entering into a referral agreement with Bailey & Greer, the client can be assured that the referring lawyer has carefully investigated and vetted our firm, and is putting his or her reputation on the line by referring the client to us. Sharing the attorney fee is simply our way of rewarding the trust that has already been built between the referral lawyer and the client. Most clients are actually pleased to learn that a portion of the attorney fees will go to the referring lawyer, and they find it comforting to know that the referring lawyer has confidence in Bailey & Greer. In our experience, no client has ever objected or viewed the sharing of fees as a negative reflection upon the referral lawyer.
This sounds too good to be true. What are the risks to me as the referring lawyer?
The ethical rules do require all of the attorneys to be “jointly responsible,” so technically there is some risk. This is why it is important to choose an accomplished and experienced personal injury firm to work with. Further, if by some miniscule chance, the case is not handled correctly and the client suffers injury, we have a substantial liability insurance policy, which will help protect the referring attorney from harm.
How do I attract personal injury cases so that I can refer them to you?
Many law firms are receiving calls about personal injury and wrongful death cases and the attorneys do not even know it. For instance, in a firm that handles only wills and estates, many receptionists will simply tell a caller who is asking about an auto accident case that their firm does not handle personal injury matters. If your firm is doing this, you are throwing money down the drain. Once you begin actually looking for cases to refer, you will be surprised by how many calls you receive.
If you chose to work with us, Bailey & Greer will provide you with simple intake forms that your staff members can use to begin the process of accepting injury, death, and SSD cases. We have referral lawyers who handle only family law, criminal, or probate matters who send us several cases a year with little or no effort. The income that can be derived from referral fees can be substantial.
I have worked on a case myself, but need help with taking depositions and trial; can you assist?
We always prefer to be associated at the beginning of a case. However, depending of course upon the facts of the case, we are often brought into cases after they have been filed. Many times the lawyer believes that a quick settlement can be achieved, and later finds out that a substantial amount of time, money, and effort is required to conclude the case.
And let’s face it; there are some cases that need to go to trial in order for the client to receive a fair result. Sadler Bailey and Thomas Greer have obtained numerous seven figure and six figure verdicts. What is more important is that we consistently beat the insurance company’s offer at trial by 5 to 10 times the amount of the offer. Although every case is different, when we make a decision to take a case to trial, the client is usually better off.
I don’t know anything about personal injury cases. How do I know what cases to refer?
You don’t have to know anything about personal injury or wrongful death cases to work with our firm. We will work with you to set up a simple referral system that will take almost no time for the referral attorney, and can be handled largely by your staff. We want you to think of Bailey & Greer as the personal injury division of your firm. The only thing the referral law firm needs to do is make the connection between the potential client and Bailey & Greer, and we will do the rest.
How much of the attorney fee will I receive?
The amount of the referral fee will depend upon the type of case, the complexity of the case, and whether the referring attorney wishes to actively participate. For instance, a clear liability rear-end auto accident case will warrant a higher referral fee than a complex medical malpractice case. The reason is that the risk of not recovering is greater with the medical malpractice case, and the expenses in a medical malpractice case are also much higher. Also, if the referring attorney wishes to actually work on the case and/or share in the expenses, then the referral fee would be greater. If you have questions about the amount of the referral fee, we invite you to call and speak with Sadler Bailey or Thomas Greer.