By: Matthew Tievsky
District of Columbia law -- specifically, D.C. Code Section 22-3225.14
-- says that if you have been in an automobile collision within the past
three weeks, a lawyer who is a stranger to you cannot solicit you to ask
to be your lawyer in a personal injury case. The lawyer cannot do this
personally, nor can the lawyer hire someone else to solicit you (we call
such persons "runners"). (This law does not prohibit lawyers
from engaging in general advertising, or reaching out to injured persons
with whom they already have a relationship.) The purpose of the law is
to ensure that people in tragic situations are not harassed, or taken
advantage of when they are at their most emotionally vulnerable.
We feel it's important to get the word out about this law, because
we have run into clients who were in auto collisions, and who tell us
that they were solicited by other lawyers, in violation of D.C. law. If
you yourself have been in an auto collision and, shortly thereafter, you
are contacted by a lawyer or a runner seeking your business, think twice
before signing on. If you do, that means that you may be working with
a lawyer who doesn't mind violating the law in pursuit of business
-- which may not bode well for how you will be treated.
If you have been in a car accident in DC, Maryland or Virginia, and you
are concerned about being treated fairly by your legal representation,
we encourage you to contact the personal injury attorneys at Chaikin,
Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C., for a free consultation.