Initial Client Consultation Following the Dog Bite in McKinney
In this case, the lawyer and the client had known each other for a long time, so there was none of the usual need for trust-building in a first meeting. She was seriously injured and needed help because she was afraid of its possible history and whether it might attack someone else. In cases in which the lawyer and client do not know each other, the lawyer wants to get to know the client first. The attorney answers questions about the process and how it works and gives the client an understanding of what will happen during the case.
Importance of Communicating
The lawyer and the firm want to have robust communication among the attorneys, staff, and the client. They want to make sure the client understands all the way through the process of what is going on in the case, where it sits in the process, and what the next stages are. At that initial stage, the lawyer likely does not know a lot of the facts involved, such as insurance coverage and the extent of injuries. Over time, these issues are figured out. Communicating these developments within the client’s team is critical in case preparation.
Documents Filed After First Meeting with Client
At the first meeting with a client, the only documents that get created are an interview sheet, various authorizations, and a contract between attorney and client. Texas law requires a written contract before a firm can do contingency work for someone. In the McKinney case, medical authorizations also were needed. The interview produced information about the dog, the bites, and location so the investigation could begin.
The investigative work often means gathering other documents, what animal control did, and whether it knew of previous incidents involving the dog. The case also involved attempting to confirm rumors the dog had bitten other people and then tracking down witnesses to those incidences.