Car Accidents

Should Multiple Car Accident Victims Use the Same Lawyer?

Posted by: Kemmy Law Firm

Personal injury cases usually don’t involve one vehicle. There are often two or more vehicles in an accident with passengers in at least one vehicle. Several accident victims being represented by one attorney may or may not work. It depends on what the client wants and whether the attorney is comfortable representing more than one party in a lawsuit.

If you were involved in a Permian Basin car accident with more than one victim, contact the experienced and compassionate attorneys at Kemmy Law Firm for a free consultation. Call (210) 750-1019 or contact us online. There are no upfront fees; you only pay us after we recover compensation.

One Attorney Can Save Time & Money

There are benefits to one attorney representing more than one person:

  • There would be one investigation into the accident by the plaintiffs. Evidence and documents would only be gathered once.
  • It would be less costly. Experts are typically hired in car crash cases to recreate what happened. The expert takes the evidence and gives his or her opinion on who’s at fault, how, and why the accident occurred. If multiple attorneys are involved, they will use their own experts. Many other expenses come with litigation. With one accident attorney, there’s only one set of costs.
  • The case may take less time. If there’s more than one attorney, the insurance company would have to manage competing claims, so their decision may take longer. If the case goes to court, deciding dates and times of depositions and court appearances are more complicated because more schedules need to be accommodated.

Texas Rules of Professional Conduct Create Limits

The biggest obstacle to an attorney working for multiple clients is the rules of professional conduct. Attorneys must zealously represent their clients’ interests and protect their legal rights. If there are actual or potential conflicts, an attorney shouldn’t work for more than one client. This is the general rule, but many times there is no conflict; the facts will determine whether representing more than one client would be acceptable.

The Texas Disciplinary Rules of Professional Conduct, Rule 1.06, covers conflicts of interest:

  • (a) A lawyer shall not represent opposing parties to the same litigation.
  • (b) In other situations, and except to the extent permitted by paragraph (c), a lawyer shall not represent a person if the representation of that person:
    • (1) involves a substantially related matter in which that person’s interests are materially and directly adverse to the interests of another client of the lawyer or the lawyer’s firm; or
    • (2) reasonably appears to be or become adversely limited by the lawyer’s or law firm’s responsibilities to another client or to a third person or by the lawyer’s or law firm’s own interests.

How Your Case Could Play Out

In a car accident case, multiple drivers may share responsibility. If so, a passenger may have legal claims against all of them, including their driver. In that situation, one attorney shouldn’t represent both a driver and a passenger.

Rule 1.06 states, “Loyalty is an essential element in the lawyer’s relationship to a client.” Therefore, an attorney can’t split loyalty for multiple clients. All their interests need to line up, so loyalty to all of them won’t result in a lesser outcome for any individual.

Part (b) covers cases where the lawyer represents parties on the same side of a case. In this situation, testimony may conflict. An attorney can’t help one client by making the other appear less credible.

Negotiating for Multiple Clients

The biggest issue concerns negotiating a settlement, especially if the victims suffered severe injuries and limited insurance coverage. Each client’s attorney should fight to get the best settlement possible. A lawyer shouldn’t be in a position where multiple clients compete for shares of one, a limited settlement agreement that may not fully compensate them.

The exceptions prove the rule. We could represent a driver and passengers injured in the same accident, depending on the facts. If the driver is not at fault, the parties don’t have conflicting reports of how it happened, and there’s enough insurance coverage for all those involved, taking on more than one client may be appropriate.

Contact the Kemmy Law Firm After a Car Accident

The Kemmy Law Firm helps accident victims throughout the Permian Basin. We have more than 50 years of combined legal experience, and our clients have received millions of dollars. The Kemmy Law Firm can handle every part of your claim so you can get all that you’re entitled to under the law.

Contact us online or call (210) 750-1019. We don’t charge for initial consultations, and you owe us nothing unless you recover compensation.

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Contact Kemmy Law Firm Today

(844) 334-4388 ONLINE FORM

Get a free consultation. We do not charge up-front fees, and you owe nothing unless you recover compensation.

When you work with us at Kemmy Law Firm, you are working with a family run firm with more than 50 years of combined experience. We are dedicated and successful trial attorneys practicing in West TX, Hobbs, NM, Midland-Odessa, and across the Permian Basin. Our team handles everything from catastrophic injury claims to complex business matters. We are here to fight for you. We dedicate our time and attention to your case and use every resource available to maximize your claim and obtain the best possible outcome.