We don’t want to pretend that we receive only positive feedback from our clients. We pride ourselves on our honest and straight forward approach to all this and thus think it’s only fair to point out that every now and then we’ll receive a bad review from a client online or an occasional note from an upset client sent directly to our firm. The negative is a very small percentage of our overall client feedback, but still worth noting if we’re going to show off all those testimonials.
Most people who don’t get the results they wanted are quite reasonable about it and understand that this sometimes happens. Some even still go on to praise us for our effort and customer service along the way. A very small minority though want to blame us or assume we did something wrong to cause their bad result. We fully understand. Traffic tickets, getting accused of doing something you feel you didn’t do, paying fines and surcharges…these can charge people up emotionally. We understand if someone has the need to vent but would also like to use this space as an opportunity to respond in general:
1. We’re not a “scam”.
A scam is a dishonest scheme or fraud. We are a legitimate business. We inform people about what they are facing during an open and honest consultation, let them know if we can potentially help and then we do our best to achieve a favorable outcome. A legal matter that does not turn out exactly the way one wanted it to does not mean that the law firm in question is a scam.
2. We never “guaranteed” a result.
We guarantee nothing because we simply can’t guarantee a result. With different officers, prosecutors, judges, courts and case facts it’s impossible to for any lawyer to guarantee the specific results in any case. Anyone who claims we “guaranteed” them something is wrong. We’ve even had clients wrongfully claim we guaranteed certain results that were factually impossible, like negotiating a reduction of the charges in the TVB administrative courts. We don’t do guarantees.
3. Perhaps you could have gotten the same results without a lawyer.
Yes, if a client is found guilty or received a smaller point reduction than anticipated it may very well have worked out exactly the same with or without an attorney. Hindsight is indeed 20/20. Unfortunately, we don’t know case results at the start of a case. All we can do is promise that we will offer an honest assessment of one’s chances during the initial consultation and work towards achieving the best results possible.
4. We didn’t “make” you guilty and your case was not “easy”.
Our attorneys weren’t driving the car during the incident in question. Our attorneys didn’t issue the ticket or prosecute the case or sit on a bench and judge what actually happened on the day in question. In fact, our attorneys were the only ones actually trying to help. If we can’t achieve the results we want then a case by definition was anything other than “easy”. Any implication that we had a victory solidly in hand and then went out of our way to turn it into a loss is a little silly, no?
5. We can only offer so much detail regarding why you were guilty or were offered a poor plea bargain.
On any case where results were less than we were hoping for, either a prosecutor has failed to offer a sizable reduction for one reason or another or an officer’s testimony has satisfied a judge that a violation was committed. We perhaps can speculate but in some cases can’t offer our clients much more than that because judges and prosecutors don’t always share every detail of their thinking with defense attorneys.
A few more things to keep in mind…
1. We constantly review our consultation “message” to clients. We make sure people understand that there is some risk involved with hiring an attorney and we make sure we do our best to set accurate and realistic expectations. Regardless, there’s an inescapable fact that not every legal matter turns out the way we want it to despite our knowledge, experience and effort. Doesn’t mean we did a bad job. It just means the case didn’t work out.
2. We’re always going to do our best when it comes to fighting for clients. If you don’t believe we do based solely on our ethical obligations as attorneys or that as human beings we simply prefer to be part of a firm that offers an honest and helpful service, would you at least believe we fight hard for completely selfish reasons? Many of our new clients are referrals from old ones. The better the results today, the better our business tomorrow. We have every incentive to do everything possible to get good results for our clients.
3. If you ever do come across something negative about Feifer & Greenberg, you’ll notice it’s never about the level of client service we provide. We’ll never be rude to our clients, we’ll never be hard to reach, we’ll always take the time to answer our client’s questions and we’ll always keep our clients up to date as a case progresses. Where we can’t offer a guarantee on specific case results, we can guarantee that we’ll always operate as a professional firm throughout the life of your case.