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Why I Keep My Denver Personal Injury Firm Small

December 28, 2021
community Denver Personal Injury Law

I recently had a conversation with one of my sons about our family business, The O’Sullivan Law Firm. It’s my hope that he grows up and, one day, I can pass this firm on to him. For now, he is interested in the law and that’s all I can ask. I want my son to be happy on his own terms. If that means he one day takes over this company, then I want to be sure I’m handing him something that I have built with integrity.

In this conversation, my son asked why I don’t grow the firm. He sees, as does everyone else out there, those giant firms throwing millions of dollars into marketing, and he wonders why his dad keeps the brakes on growth.

I explained that I truly do keep our firm small on purpose. Our size enables me to do several things that are unique to personal injury law firms. 

Quality Over Quantity: Denver Personal Injury Service at its Finest

This is going to sound counterintuitive, but the best thing you can do in a personal injury practice is to give yourself the space to turn down cases. Maybe the case is flawed. Maybe the person bringing the case isn’t truthful or is trying to scam an insurance company.

Having the ability to turn down cases doesn’t mean we’re not bleeding hearts who don’t want to help as many people as we can! I have simply created a business model that does not rely on me taking every case that walks through the door. For example, I don’t pour my money into marketing, which gives me breathing room to listen to each prospective client who walks through the door. 

What does this mean to the clients we represent? It means The O’Sullivan Law Firm has an amazing reputation with judges, insurance adjusters, hospitals, doctors, and everyone we work with. They know we do not take frivolous, fraudulent cases and they respect us. 

That respect transfers to our clients.

Those huge personal injury firms (which I call personal injury mills, like puppy mills), have very different business models. (Read more here.) They cast giant fishing nets, take everything in, and represent anybody. There’s a joke in the personal injury industry: 98% of the lawyers make the other 2% look bad. Sadly, it’s true. And their reputation makes all personal injury firms look bad. 

On the other hand, when we take cases, everybody we work with knows that our clients have legitimate claims. They have real injuries, significant medical expenses, lost wages. Our reputation serves our clients very well.

Genuine Relationships: Another Benefit of Being a Small Personal Injury Firm in Denver

Also (and this is huge for me): if I grow the firm, I lose touch with the people I work with and the people I work for! That is a sacrifice I’m not willing to make. As I’ve said in the past, this work is my vocation, my calling. I am unwilling to grow the firm at the expense of the relationships that make the work meaningful.

My staff and attorneys are close. We aren’t departmentalized. At those big firms, clients are handed from intake to attorneys, to case managers, to pre-lawsuit departments that try to settle the case, to lawsuit departments that take it to trial (rarely). Their clients feel like hacky sacks knocked from department to department.

How Our Law Firm is Different

At The O’Sullivan Law Firm, our clients work with one Denver personal injury attorney from start to finish, whether the case is settled or goes all the way to trial. We develop relationships built on trust and we explain every step of the process to our clients.

I had a mentor who once said that, if you get over a certain number of clients at any given time, you start to lose track of who they are. Cases can take many months to years to reach completion, and I want my team to understand the story of each client we represent. I am unwilling to grow and lose that human connection.

Finally, if you walk into my office, you’ll see that we all know each other at The O’Sullivan Law Firm! We support each other, share challenges and triumphs… we genuinely like each other! In the end, this is the kind of work environment I want to hand down to my son.

It is all very intentional: small means high-quality legal work, high-quality people, and a high-quality work environment. I’m very proud of my small, high-quality personal injury firm.

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