SPI - Settlement Professionals Inc. - Co-founder of Society of Settlement Planners

Introducing the

Trial Lawyer Protection Packet


3 Benefits - 1 - Protect plaintiffs from "specialized" risks; 2 - Narrow your scope of engagement; 3 - Adopt best practices
3 benefits
3 Benefits - 1 - Protect plaintiffs from "specialized" risks; 2 - Narrow your scope of engagement; 3 - Adopt best practices
Trial Lawyer Protection Packet

Get all three with templates in the Trial Lawyer Protection Packet

"I can't recommend this packet enough.  Perfect for every personal injury lawyer."

– Leland Dempsey, Dempsey & Kingsland, Missouri (former AAJ Board Governor)

Read reviews from lawyers across the country.

Tom D'Amore, Oregon
Trial Lawyer, AAJ Executive Committee

Leland Dempsey, Missouri
Trial Lawyer, Former Member of AAJ's Board of Governors

Joe Lavelle, California
Trial Lawyer, AV Preeminent® Lawyer

Sheila Blackford, Oregon
Ethics Lawyer, Former Editor-in-Chief of the ABA's Law Practice Magazine

Arden Olson, Oregon
Ethics Lawyer, Former Member of the ABA's Committee on Ethics & Professional Responsibility

Dan Hindert, Utah
Trial Lawyer, AV Preeminent® Lawyer, Co-Author of Structured Settlements Treatise

Larry Cohen, Arizona
Trial Lawyer, Recognized by Super Lawyers®

Matthew Kaplan, Oregon
Trial Lawyer, AV Preeminent® Lawyer

Eddie Stone, New York
Trial Lawyer at Edward Stone Law

Endorsed By Trial and Ethics Lawyers

Tom D'Amore, Oregon
Trial Lawyer, AAJ Executive Committee

Leland Dempsey, Missouri
Trial Lawyer, Former Member of AAJ's Board of Governors

Joe Lavelle, California
Trial Lawyer, AV Preeminent® Lawyer

Sheila Blackford, Oregon
Ethics Lawyer, Former Editor-in-Chief of the ABA's Law Practice Magazine

Arden Olson, Oregon
Ethics Lawyer, Former Member of the ABA's Committee on Ethics & Professional Responsibility

Dan Hindert, Utah
Trial Lawyer, AV Preeminent® Lawyer, Co-Author of Structured Settlements Treatise

Larry Cohen, Arizona
Trial Lawyer, Recognized by Super Lawyers®

Matthew Kaplan, Oregon
Trial Lawyer, AV Preeminent® Lawyer

Eddie Stone, New York
Trial Lawyer at Edward Stone Law

Endorsed By Trial and Ethics Lawyers

Read reviews from lawyers across the country.

Tom D'Amore, Oregon
Trial Lawyer, AAJ Executive Committee

Leland Dempsey, Missouri
Trial Lawyer, Former Member of AAJ's Board of Governors

Joe Lavelle, California
Trial Lawyer, AV Preeminent® Lawyer

Sheila Blackford, Oregon
Ethics Lawyer, Former Editor-in-Chief of the ABA's Law Practice Magazine

Arden Olson, Oregon
Ethics Lawyer, Former Member of the ABA's Committee on Ethics & Professional Responsibility

Dan Hindert, Utah
Trial Lawyer, AV Preeminent® Lawyer, Co-Author of Structured Settlements Treatise

Larry Cohen, Arizona
Trial Lawyer, Recognized by Super Lawyers®

Matthew Kaplan, Oregon
Trial Lawyer, AV Preeminent® Lawyer

Eddie Stone, New York
Trial Lawyer at Edward Stone Law

Inform Clients of Critical Risks Before Settlement

Taxes

  • Unexpected taxes on physical injury damages and legal fees
  • Missed tax savings when settling claims for emotional distress

Dissipation

  • Delayed or lost public benefits without a Special Needs Trust
  • Exhausting a cash settlement, or factoring away a structured settlement

Medicare

  • Overpaying of Medicare lien from settlement proceeds
  • Delayed or reduced eligibility for future medicals and other needs

Taxes

  • Unexpected taxes on physical injury damages and legal fees
  • Missed tax savings when settling claims for emotional distress

Dissipation

  • Delayed or lost public benefits without a Special Needs Trust
  • Exhausting a cash settlement, or factoring away a structured settlement

Medicare

  • Overpaying of Medicare lien from settlement proceeds
  • Delayed or reduced eligibility for future medicals and other needs
testimonial quote

"An excellent source of information and practical tools to navigate trial lawyers' sometimes overlooked ethical obligations on specialty subjects like tax, Medicare, and financial planning."

– Sheila Blackford, Ethics Lawyer, Former Editor-in-Chief of the ABA's Law Practice Magazine

testimonial quote
testimonial quote

"An excellent source of information and practical tools to navigate trial lawyers' sometimes overlooked ethical obligations on specialty subjects like tax, Medicare, and financial planning."

– Sheila Blackford, Ethics Lawyer, Former Editor-in-Chief of the ABA's Law Practice Magazine

testimonial quote

Know and Narrow Your Scope of Representation

ABA Committee and CLE materials define "competent representation" for personal injury lawyers.

In legal malpractice actions, plaintiff lawyers are the most common defendants.1 Trial lawyers must "consider[] the tax implications of the settlement"2 and inform clients "about the options of structured settlements, trusts and the effect of the judgment or settlement on [each] client's public benefits eligibility."3 Several Bar Associations require personal injury lawyers to address "economic benefits and risks"4 and "economic considerations."5

To narrow your scope of representation, ethical rules require the client's "informed consent,"6 given after "adequate information and explanation about the material risks … and reasonably available alternatives."7 Courts and State Bar Associations have repeatedly elaborated on these points.8

The Protection Packet is intended to obtain that consent – it informs clients of potential risks and modifies your engagement agreement.

ABA Committee and CLE materials define "competent representation" for personal injury lawyers.


In legal malpractice actions, plaintiff lawyers are the most common defendants.1 Trial lawyers must "consider[] the tax implications of the settlement"2 and inform clients "about the options of structured settlements, trusts and the effect of the judgment or settlement on [each] client's public benefits eligibility."3 Several Bar Associations require personal injury lawyers to address "economic benefits and risks"4 and "economic considerations."5


To narrow your scope of representation, ethical rules require the client's "informed consent,"6 given after "adequate information and explanation about the material risks … and reasonably available alternatives."7 Courts and State Bar Associations have repeatedly elaborated on these points.8


The Protection Packet is intended to obtain that consent – it informs clients of potential risks and modifies your engagement agreement.

Know and narrow your scope of representation
testimonial quote

"It's obvious that our intake documents have been woefully inadequate in advising clients on these critical issues. I simply didn't have the expertise to draft them myself and am so glad to start using them. Thank you for making it easy to get our clients the right advice!"

– Rachel O'Neal, Trial Lawyer, Recognized by Super Lawyers®

testimonial quote
testimonial quote

"It's obvious that our intake documents have been woefully inadequate in advising clients on these critical issues. I simply didn't have the expertise to draft them myself and am so glad to start using them. Thank you for making it easy to get our clients the right advice!"

– Rachel O'Neal, Trial Lawyer, Recognized by Super Lawyers®

testimonial quote

Refer Clients to Specialists

When referring clients to specialists, lawyers have obligations.1 They must refer "based on assessment of the quality of the third party's services and fairness of the price,"2 and provide enough information for the client to make an informed decision.3

The Protection Packet's template referral letter does so, and more:

  • Identifies what to look for in specialists, and how to find them
  • Describes typical fees and fee structures
  • Memorializes the client's responsibility to decide on hiring

The Protection Packet's template referral letter does so, and more:

  • Identifies what to look for in specialists, and how to find them
  • Describes typical fees and fee structures
  • Memorializes the client's responsibility to decide on hiring

What's Included: The Trial Lawyer Protection Packet

  • Multi-subject disclosure packet, sample referral letter, and ethics guidance to navigate these issues
  • Template language to narrow your scope of representation
  • Disclosure documents to inform and memorialize client decisions on taxes, finance, and Medicare
  • Satisfaction assured or money back

Ready To Protect Your Clients and Your Firm?

You can do so by adopting best practices.

testimonial quote

"This is incredible, superb - a great device, and worth every penny..."

– Larry J. Cohen, Trial Lawyer, Recognized by Super Lawyers®

testimonial quote
testimonial quote

"This is incredible, superb - a great device, and worth every penny..."

– Larry J. Cohen, Trial Lawyer, Recognized by Super Lawyers®

testimonial quote

Our Authors

Taxation

Jeremy Babener

Jeremy Babener
Tax Attorney w/ Settlement Focus
Former Tax Fellow, U.S. Treasury
NYU Law JD & Tax LLM
Lane Powell PC

Financial Protection

Jack Meligan

Jack Meligan
Financial Advisor to Plaintiffs
Government Benefits Specialist
Founder, Society of Settlement Planners
Settlement Professionals, Inc.

Medicare

John Cattie, Jr.

John Cattie, Jr.
Medicare Set Aside Attorney
Over 10,000 Cases Handled
Villanova JD & MBA
Cattie PLLC

Taxation

Jeremy Babener

Jeremy Babener
Tax Attorney w/ Settlement Focus
Former Tax Fellow, U.S. Treasury
NYU Law JD & Tax LLM
Lane Powell PC

Financial Protection

Jack Meligan

Jack Meligan
Financial Advisor to Plaintiffs
Government Benefits Specialist
Founder, Society of Settlement Planners
Settlement Professionals, Inc.

Medicare

John Cattie, Jr.

John Cattie, Jr.
Medicare Set Aside Attorney
Over 10,000 Cases Handled
Villanova JD & MBA
Cattie PLLC

Taxation

Jeremy Babener

Jeremy Babener
Tax Attorney w/ Settlement Focus
Former Tax Fellow, U.S. Treasury
NYU Law JD & Tax LLM
Lane Powell PC

Financial Protection

Jack Meligan

Jack Meligan
Financial Advisor to Plaintiffs
Government Benefits Specialist
Founder, Society of Settlement Planners
Settlement Professionals, Inc.

Medicare

John Cattie, Jr.

John Cattie, Jr.
Medicare Set Aside Attorney
Over 10,000 Cases Handled
Villanova JD & MBA
Cattie PLLC

A "Look" At What You'll Get...

A look at what you'll get

Clients will understand the risks they face and can "check the box" for each decision. You'll have template documents to narrow your scope, inform your clients, and refer to specialists.

A "Look" At What You'll Get...

A look at what you'll get

Clients will understand the risks they face and can "check the box" for each decision. You'll have template documents to narrow your scope, inform your clients, and refer to specialists.

testimonial quote

"I hate dealing with this stuff. It's my least favorite part of the job. But it is also one of the most important. I think your forms are right on."

– Josh Lamborn, Trial Lawyer, Recognized by Super Lawyers®

testimonial quote
testimonial quote

"I hate dealing with this stuff. It's my least favorite part of the job. But it is also one of the most important. I think your forms are right on."

– Josh Lamborn, Trial Lawyer, Recognized by Super Lawyers®

testimonial quote

Satisfaction Assured

If it doesn't fit your practice just let us know. We'll refund your purchase, no questions asked.

Frequently Asked Questions

1: What makes the disclosure forms different from what I'd write or get from my peers?

There's no "magic sauce" in these documents – the protection is provided by their concise summaries of clients' relevant risks and opportunities.

Other attorneys could prepare similar documents. They just haven't. As we did, they'd need to get substantial input from expert and ethics counsel. Recognizing the need for this work, we chose to take on the project ourselves.

2: What if clients sign forms saying that they'll get specialist advice, and then don't?

We've written the forms with that possible outcome in mind. You can't force a client to make responsible choices. But, you can memorialize that you put them in the position to do so.

3: How do I access and use the forms?

You'll be able to download the Protection Packet immediately after purchase. We'll also send you an e-mail with the Packet attached.

The template documents are in Microsoft Word so that you can modify as needed.

4: Will these forms guarantee compliance and protection from malpractice suits?

Every state is different, but most states substantially follow the ABA Model Rules that we built the Protection Packet to satisfy. We worked with ethics counsel for exactly that purpose.

Every case and client is different, so we can't promise 100% protection. But, these forms will educate clients about critical issues they face, ask them to narrow your scope of representation, and help them identify specialists.

5: What if I prefer to refer clients to a long-standing and trusted specialist?

That's great. The template referral letter gives you the language to explain why clients should go to your trusted specialist. It's a form and readily adaptable to recommend any competent professional.

6: Are you just scaring us? Is there real risk of malpractice liability?

These are fair questions. We're not saying that there's a new wave of trial lawyer malpractice actions. But, we are observing that many trial lawyers are unaware of their ethical responsibilities – we were surprised by those responsibilities ourselves. They are potential sources of client criticism, bar complaints, and liability. And importantly, they can be addressed easily and efficiently.

The Protection Packet summarizes some of the claims made against trial lawyers on these subjects. We've discussed representing some of those lawyers with malpractice counsel. Individual firms have paid hundreds of thousands, even millions of dollars – sometimes including "double damages" not covered by malpractice insurance.

We received review and confirmation from several well-respected ethics lawyers around the country, including former members of the ABA's Committee on Ethics & Professional Responsibility. Then, we did our best to use matter-of-fact language, and not hyperbole, in explaining the need for and benefits of our documents. We welcome your input.

SPI - Settlement Professionals Inc.

Brought to you by Settlement Professionals, Inc.
phone: 800-666-5584      e-mail: protectionpacket@settlepro.com      web: settlepro.com

© 2020 Settlement Professionals, Inc.    •    Home    •    Endorsements & Testimonials    •    Purchase the Packet

SPI - Settlement Professionals Inc.

Brought to you by Settlement Professionals, Inc.
phone: 800-666-5584      e-mail: protectionpacket@settlepro.com      web: settlepro.com

© 2020 Settlement Professionals, Inc.
Home    •    Endorsements & Testimonials    •    Purchase the Packet

SPI - Settlement Professionals Inc.

Brought to you by
Settlement Professionals, Inc.
phone: 800-666-5584
 e-mail: protectionpacket@settlepro.com
 web: settlepro.com

© 2020 Settlement Professionals, Inc.
Home
 Endorsements & Testimonials
Purchase the Packet