A LAWYER’S LAWYER
By Richard Hellerman, J.D.
I’m a lawyer in a professional networking group with other lawyers. And at the end of each monthly meeting we get assigned to set up a private meeting with 1 or 2 other members to get to know them better.
Well for whatever reason over the course of the pandemic, I was randomly assigned to meet with Sean Park 8 or 9 times. It was crazy. We’d talk family, politics, and discovered we had been living parallel lives without knowing it. It turns out there was a reason for our connection that was greater than I expected.
My former brother-in-law, Michael, someone I loved but had been estranged from for years, had a car accident several years ago where the airbag deployed and it messed up his back and actually derailed his life, and he never pursued collecting damages from the insurance company. He was living in Florida and got in touch and wondered if there was any chance he could financially recover from the accident. It was a heartbreaking situation and he asked me directly: do you know anyone who might be able to help?
So I told Sean about Michael because Sean practices in Florida, too, and I told a couple other lawyers and gave Michael their names. The other lawyers I asked said they couldn’t help him. I asked Sean, could you just take a little time to talk with him on the phone even if you have to let him down easy? And Sean agreed. And this is when I found out that Sean doesn’t take any shortcuts or phone anything in.
Most PI lawyers don’t think of you as an injured person who needs help, they think of you as a commodity — there’s money to be made on people’s misfortunes… For Sean, it’s about helping someone. It’s not about a payout, it’s about a man who wants to help someone else get on with his life. And he did. I have a lot of respect for that.
He spent hours looking at the materials Michael sent, and too many things about his case were problematic – the car was long gone, he couldn’t examine the airbag, and the amount of time that had passed was too great. Sean must have spent 5 to 10 hours reviewing the case and talking with Michael. After they spoke Michael told me, “He gave me bad news but he was so good at explaining it to me and walking me through the pitfalls and the shortcomings of my case that I can let it go.”
That’s the kind of generous unpaid advice you’d be lucky to expect from family, but not from someone you casually know through a networking group. I feel lucky to have met him. As a result I got help for Michael that I was unable to get from anyone else. And it went well beyond writing an email. This was phone calls and hours spent reviewing the situation. And that’s the Sean Park factor. That’s what makes him him.
Most PI lawyers don’t think of you as an injured person who needs help, they think of you as a commodity – there’s money to be made on people’s misfortunes. For Sean, it’s about helping someone. It’s not about a payout, it’s about a man who wants to help someone else get on with his life. And he did. I have a lot of respect for that.