What Frank Offers His Clients
Frank Shaughnessy will personally investigate your claim. He will bring his 25 years of experience as a field adjuster to visit the scene of the accident or property, photograph and diagram the scene. For property claims he will review coverage issues, co-insurance penalties, deductible applications, and salvage values. For auto, truck, and motorcycle accidents Frank will go the tow yards; inspect the vehicles, taking photographs, assessing the points of impact, seatbelts and tires, looking for any defects that might lead to a products claim on your behalf. He will contact the police department and secure all their reports, photographs,
witness statements. He will personally contact the witnesses listed on the police reports and interview them asking questions to determine liability, sobriety and other important facts. Frank will personally speak to you about the accident, listening and then asking questions. He will not rely on an “investigator” and then have to read a report to find out what happened to you. This all gives him and you an advantage when the settlement process begins with the insurance company. Frank’s experience and hard work will ensure that you survive the insurance company settlement process.
For instance, A few years ago, an old friend came to Frank about a water damage loss to his commercial building in Boston. Water had completely flooded the first floor, damaging the existing business tenants office spaces and destroying the new restaurant/hall that Frank’s friend was about to open. The building had a million dollar coverage limit. The major insurance company had offered only $165,000.00 to settle claiming that the building was underinsured. Frank went to Boston, spent a week inspecting the damages, reviewing damage estimates and construction invoices for the restaurant and hall. In three months he settled the claim by simply contacting the insurance company, speaking with and meeting with the adjusters and writing letters. The claim settled for $975,000.00. No lawsuit, no waiting two to three years, no depositions, no legal pleadings. No nonsense and legal talk, just plain results that ended with a check that cashed at the bank.
DO THE MATH
Frank would rather settle than sue. Most attorneys in Brevard County charge 33 1/3% to handle your personal injury case and if they file suit and the defendant answers the percentage goes up to 40%. Answer is a legal term, meaning the other side has responded in writing to your complaint. Frank handles most personal injury matters for 25% and only if he has to sue and the defendant answers does the rate go to 30%. Right away 8% more is going into your pocket. Even if suit is filed and answered you save 10%. Why pay more?
The 25% rate applies to straightforward injury claims, such as your stopped car is rear-ended and you are taken to the hospital with serious injuries. As long as the other driver has insurance or you have uninsured motorist coverage that type of claim does not require a trial attorney. Settlement only requires collection of all the related medical bills and reports then submission of a well-written demand letter. You do need an attorney to make sure all available insurance is found and that you receive a fair settlement. You need an attorney that knows auto insurance policies, someone with 25 years of experience handling those claims, like a former insurance adjuster, like Frank Shaughnessy.
If you can settle a claim for say, $10,000 and pay 25% you get $7,500 with Frank. With attorney X you get $6,700, a difference of $800. Is that $800 worth more to you than spending time speaking to attorney X’s paralegal or secretary? You decide.
Moreover, if your claim has a value of say $50,000, let’s do the math again. Without suit with Frank you get $37,500. With attorney X you take home $33,335 a difference in your favor of $4,165.
Most insurance companies today are very tough to settle with. Your best offer without suing maybe $60,000. With Frank on your side at that offer you would have $45,000. You might consider that and save yourself a year or more of waiting to take a week or more off work and go to court for maybe verdict in your favor. With attorney X the $60,000 offer is only $40,002 to you. A difference of $4,998.
However, say with the same case you decide to go to court with attorney X and that after a year or so, a day of your time for your deposition, waiting and waiting you take a week or more off from work to attend your trial and get a verdict of $70,000. That looks good, $10,000 more than the $60,000 offer. Attorney X thanks you, than takes his "costs” (like trial exhibits, deposition costs, medical records costs, expert costs, filing costs) and then his 40% fee. However, the fee comes first so 40% right off the top or $28,000. That leaves you with $42,000 from which you owe Attorney X his “costs”. If you had settled with Frank on your side a year earlier you would have $45,000and no costs or fees to pay out. Do you really want to experience a weeklong court trial seated next to your very own trial attorney?
Always do the math. Is being able to say “I had my day in court and I got those guys” worth $3,000 (plus costs and fees) and waiting over a year? If so, good luck to you and your trial attorney. You will need it. Do not forget that jury of six that all have to agree so that you win the case. One juror disagrees and you have wasted your time. In addition, you may owe the defendant his attorney fees and costs.