For some time we’ve been kicking around the idea of creating a guide to communication for our clients. We’ve got something, but I’d like to know if it can be improved. Who better to ask than our clients or potential clients. Please read our draft guide to communication below and let me know what you think. I’m begging you! : )
Guide to Communication With Your Workers’ Compensation and Disability Attorney
First, let me say that I sincerely believe that good client/lawyer communication is absolutely essential to good representation. It is my goal that I am accessible and that communication with my clients is open and productive. Because I have hundreds of clients, this can be difficult. I am keenly aware of how frustrating it is when you have pressing questions and concerns and I am happy to try to answer your questions as quickly and thoroughly as possible.
There are several things we can both do to make communication between us easier.
For those of you who have access to email, my strong preference is communication via email for several reasons that are better for each of us:
- With email we don’t have to play “telephone tag” with each other,
- Email allows me to respond at any time: night; day or weekend,
- All emails are automatically saved to our case management program so we have a running record of your questions and my responses, and,
- If you save my email responses to your computer, you will have them for future reference if you have any confusion about what I have told you.
During the day I have hearings, client meetings, phone calls from clients and compensation carriers. My days are often very busy and that’s why I have the preference for email discussed above. However, I am well aware of the fact that not everyone has email, so a few telephone tips will help each of us:
- I make it my policy to not interrupt my meetings with you to take telephone calls from other clients but that same policy means that I can’t interrupt a meeting with another client to take your call– it’s a matter of respect for ALL my clients. Accordingly, if you call, please do not be offended if I am unable to take your call.
- If you call me (733-8866 or 800-943-3529), please be prepared to leave a voicemail with the details that will help me call you back with an answer to your concerns. I try to return phone calls two times a day: 8-9 am and 4-5pm. When leaving a voicemail, please let me know which of these two time periods are better for you, the # I can reach you at at that time. I will do my best to return your call at that time.
- I try to return all calls within 24 hours of your call so if you haven’t heard back from me within that time period, please call back and leave another message for me or my assistant Terri. Many times I have left messages for clients who never received them for a million different reasons: a teenager “forgot” to give their parent the message, someone wrote it down and then lost the paper it was written on, etc. The bottom line is that none of us is perfect but I will try very hard to make sure you get a prompt response to your call.
You may fax me at 607-732-6062. If you fax me, please make sure your name, phone #, fax # and/or email address are on all faxes.
Thanks for reading and please let me know what you think.
Eric L. Johnson, Esq.
Workers’ Compensation and Social Security Disability Attorney
Ziff Law Firm, LLP
303 William St., Elmira, NY 14902
Tel: (607) 733-8866
Fax: (607) 732-6062
Toll Free: 1-800-943-3529