Never Backing Down HowOur Clients Have Inspired Us to Do More
L ast month, I wrote about how being firm about what you need helps you get where you want to be in life. Inversely, you have to be prepared for whatever may happen, staying flexible. One example sticks out in everyone’s minds at our firm. It required all hands on deck and gave us limited time to work. We were helping one of our clients battle the state for compensation. He was a longtime cancer survivor who had no kids but loved his extended family dearly. We were preparing to take his case to court when we got word that the state wanted to negotiate a settlement. But something far bigger was about to happen. For several days, we were struggling to get in touch with him— which was odd. We soon heard why, from his sisters: He’d been given a terminal diagnosis and moved to hospice. With his medical history, we figured he would have had an estate plan in place. We found that wasn’t the case. We shut down our office immediately, focusing entirely on our client’s situation. We began the estate planning process for him, looping his sisters in, too, and they helped us prepare his financials. When we got everything sorted out, we went to see him for final approval. The move to hospice
had been very taxing, however. A cocktail of drugs numbed his pain but left him unable to make decisions. We returned every day to see if we could get a signature from him, and eventually he was well enough to provide it. The paperwork was in order, but we weren’t done fighting for him yet. When the state heard that the person seeking compensation from them was a just few weeks from death, they pulled out of negotiations: Suddenly they were gung-ho for court in a distant three months. We knew we couldn’t let them leave our client’s family in a lurch. We approached the court. On a Tuesday, I told the judge that we were ready to go to court next Monday, and that we were filing emergency paperwork Friday. The judge laughed and told me, “I know you mean well, but we’re not going to trial on Monday.” This was bluster to me. I wanted the court and the state to know that we were ready with our case whether they were or not. This is a key example of being resolved and flexible at the same time. We had to be prepared for what could happen, but ultimately, after due diligence, it was out of our hands. Soon after, the judge set the trial date for a few weeks later, rocking the state’s plan. Suddenly, they went from having three months to prepare to having only three weeks. They offered to settle the case out of court, and we agreed to terms. The following day, our client passed away. The settlement didn’t mean much, in the end. Our client was deceased, and even in the process of expediting this trial, he wasn’t lucid enough to be sure what was happening.
Four generations celebrating the first Albrecht family law school graduate.
However, it meant the world to his sisters — those who’d meant the most to him.
Many people might shy away from planning for the event of their death. Because of this, and the story outlined here, we are establishing a program to begin offering more estate-planning assistance in early 2019. We know that planning for your family’s life after your death is scary and overwhelming; it can feel like an endless chasm of choices. Our goal is to make this process as affordable and seamless as possible for you and your loved ones. We will be offering discounts to our current clients, and programming options will be available. We will gladly put all our effort into getting emergency planning in place for you. We want you and your family to be prepared. We know we can help.
This Month’s Happiest Client!
“I am very pleased. I appreciate the promptness to my questions and keeping me informed with everything, all the steps and the process.” -Melissa A.
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