Florida injury and accident lawyer, Guy S. DiMartino, DC, JD, talks about the three reasons a person may not want an “aggressive” lawyer to represent them.
I was at lunch the other day and this woman asked me to give her the three single words that best describe me as a lawyer in case she had a referral. I always like referrals so I answered her: (1) assertive; (2) responsive; and (3) loyal. Her response was, why loyal – how come not aggressive? I answered I would want an assertive lawyer to represent me a 100 times over before I wanted an aggressive lawyer to represent me. Legal cases are filled with high emotion and aggression has no place in the practice of law.
I answered that assertiveness and loyalty to the client are the best attributes a trial lawyer can have. These qualities translate into the following:
- Taking the client's best interests before the lawyer's individual interests or the interests of the firm
- Fully informing the client about the pros and cons of their case so that they can make an educated decision about their case
- The lawyer who is upfront with their client and does not tell the client what they think she wants to hear for years and then when push comes to shove – brow beats the client into taking the plea or taking the settlement.
Why a client does not want an “Aggressive Lawyer”
Many lawyers and the public think they want an aggressive lawyer that is why if you open up the yellow pages or watch TV ads the words aggressive is attached to attorney advertising. Webster's defines aggressive as :
- Tending or exhibiting “aggression”; and marked by obtrusive energy
- Aggression is defined as a forceful action or procedure as an unprovoked attack; hostile, injurious or destructive behavior
- Synonyms for Aggressive are belligerent, combative, contentious, defiant, malicious, and militant
Think about how we use “aggressive” in the English language:
- Mary died because her cancer was aggressive and spread throughout the body
- That guy is an “aggressive” driver – weaving in and out of traffic
- Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor was “aggressive”
So the people who want an “aggressive lawyer” to represent them in their case want a lawyer who is hostile, injurious or exhibits destructive behavior? These characteristics do not work for resolve a legal case.
The average person wants an “Assertive” lawyer representing them.
Webster's defines “assertive” as: “having or showing a bold forcefulness in the pursuit of a goal.”
Synonyms for “assertive” are ambitious, enterprising, and fierce.
Aggressive lawyers do not get anything done because they:
- Are busy fighting with the other side about everything instead of focusing on the real issues
- They have burned bridges with a scorched earth mentality
- Are more worried about their own ego than getting results for their clients
Everybody has to make a decision about what kind of lawyer they want to assist them in their case. Me personally, I would stay away from the “aggressive” lawyer each and every time.
If you have any questions about a Florida medical malpractice or personal injury matter, you can contact Guy S. DiMartino, DC, JD at (352) 267-9168.