The use of cappers to solicit business is illegal under California law, but it is not always easy for someone who has been injured to identify a capper. If you are searching for a personal injury attorney, there are a few factors to remember to help you find ethical representation.
Signs of a Capper
A capper, also called a runner or ambulance chaser, is a person or organization who is acting for compensation on behalf of a lawyer or law firm to solicit business for the lawyer or law firm. You are being lured by a capper if you are approached shortly after your accident by a person who claims to be working for a law firm. Cappers approach potential clients at accident scenes, at a hospital, at funerals, or at their private residence. These individuals have not been contacted first by you or your family and are engaged solely to get your signature on a contract while your are desperate and have not had a chance to speak to a lawyer who abides by the law. There are risks associated with hiring an attorney that approaches you after an accident. This person will use aggressive sales tactics and will make unrealistic promises to attempt to convince you to become a client of the law firm, often appealing to your worry about your injuries and your financial needs for your family. They will provide vague and misleading information instead of being forthcoming with answers to any questions you have about your legal rights.
Unsolicited phone calls and letters that arrive after an accident are also a warning sign of a capper. When a letter contains personal information that should not be publicly available, this is a sign that an attorney is trying to solicit business improperly. When someone calls your home that you do not know, they researched your contact information or got your telephone number illegally from someone who is tasked with keeping your information confidential.
Cappers are paid a fee for each client they bring to an attorney's office, plus a part of the final settlement. Some cappers can receive tens of thousands of dollars to secure your signature on a retainer contract. A capper has no interest in protecting your legal rights only to secure a payday for them for violating the law. This scam is all about making an easy profit. It is likely that you will be pushed to settle quickly and may receive subpar representation from an attorney you may never even meet.
Finding Ethical Car Accident Representation in California
When it comes to finding ethical representation, the best approach is to do your own homework. Visit attorney websites in your community to learn about their qualifications and see what they can offer you. Then schedule an initial consultation to discuss your legal rights and options for making a personal injury claim against the person or entity that caused your injuries.
The legal team at Inland Empire Law Group never uses runners and cappers to secure clients for the firm. We would rather lose the opportunity to serve a client than to start a relationship based upon illegal activity. Our personal injury team serves residents of Rancho Cucamonga, San Bernardino, Ontario, Victorville, Fontana, and the surrounding areas of the Inland Empire. We will also represent clients in all of Southern California. Our attorneys are dedicated to advocating for the interests of California residents who suffer injuries due to the negligence of others. Call (888) 694-3529 or (909) 481-0100 today to schedule a free, no-obligation case review.