There is a Chicago class action attorney I know who also does consumer fraud cases.  I’ve referred her some cases over the years.  Some of the cases she’s pursued, others she has rejected.  But on a lot of cases she has told me that she wants to bring a lawsuit, but the client doesn’t want to do the work needed to help her find out if there’s a good case or not.

Take this recent referral where a man had his car re-possessed.  He hadn’t done anything wrong, the repo company thought they were taking it from the old owner.  This is likely very illegal and a good case. Here is part of what she said to him in writing as a follow up.

As we discussed, when the car is released to you, if you are forced to sign anything, indicate you are signing under protest and without waiver of any rights.

You will also want to inspect the vehicle to ensure there has been no damage.  Take photographs of any issues and log any personal property that may be missing or lost.

And to reiterate, here is the paperwork I need:

  1. A summary from you of what happened (provide dates, times, the names of the people you spoke with and what you said to one another)
  2. A copy of all vehicle paperwork from the dealership
  3. A copy of your payment stubs or correspondence with your finance company
  4. A copy of the title
  5. A copy of any documents the dealership says it sent to the finance company who claimed to have an interest in your car
  6. Any Carfax or Autocheck reports you received

Once you have gathered this together, call me and we can arrange an appointment or telephone conference after you’ve e-mailed/faxed me the above.  Then I will be able to see if this is a matter my office can assist you with.

I’ve seen similar correspondence on other cases.  The reason the lawyer is asking for this is because the client is the only one who can get this information.  Surprisingly, many clients just want to verbally tell their story and turn over papers.  They expect the lawyer to just figure everything out.

No matter the type of case, that’s not how it works.  It’s also not how you can be successful and win the case which is of course the goal.  Your job is to paint as clear of a picture as possible for the attorney.

This is how it works in just any type of case.  It’s always a great idea to give your lawyer a summary of what happened.  If it’s an injury case, you want to get copies of accident reports, medical records or any other information.  If you’ve lost pay, you want to prove what you make via pay stubs.  Most of these items your lawyer can’t get.  In all cases you increase your chances of success by working with your lawyer.

Lawsuits aren’t meant to be easy, even when you’ve been obviously wronged.  If you want justice, you have to put some work in.

As always if you have questions and want a free consultation, please call us any time.