Synergy Blog

Outsourcing Lien Resolution: Happier Clients and a Better Bottom Line

By Stacey N. Jiunto, Esq. – Staff Lien Counsel

Two questions are at the forefront of every injured party’s mind concerning litigation: 1) how much will I recover, and 2) how long will it take to receive my money? Outsourcing your lien resolution needs offers a solution that can help address both of these issues. Lien resolution specialists strive to efficiently provide the injured party with significant savings[1] in as little as a few months after settlement.[2]

Ethical Guidelines Permitting Outsourcing

The American Bar Association has outlined several guidelines (Formal Opinion 08-451) to address any ethical concerns that may arise when outsourcing. The Florida Bar has also issued its own mandate (Opinion 07-2) in regard to outsourcing that provides similar guidance. Specifically, a lawyer may outsource legal or non-legal support services provided the lawyer remains ultimately responsible for rendering competent legal services to the client. Reasonable efforts should be made to ensure that the conduct of the lawyers or non-lawyers to whom tasks are outsourced is compatible with one’s own professional obligations as a lawyer. Additionally, client consent should be obtained, and appropriate disclosures made, regarding the use of lawyers or non-lawyers outside of the lawyer’s firm. The fees charged must be reasonable and the outsourcing lawyer must avoid assisting the unauthorized practice of law.

Advantages of Outsourcing

The benefits of outsourcing lien resolution to specialists include minimizing operating costs of the firm, gaining a knowledgeable partner, and providing the best possible result to the client. Each phone call made or correspondence written consumes precious firm resources and time of lawyers and support staff. Moreover, inefficiencies abound when lawyers and support staff work with lien holders without being armed with all available arguments that may reduce or eliminate lien obligations. A personal injury law firm that conducts lien resolution services in-house must remain well-versed in all relevant laws and practices in addition to any changes or developments. Alternatively, lien resolution attorneys and analysts already possess the requisite knowledge to handle even the most difficult lien holders and have an established history of achieving results. In addition, lien resolution specialists spend all day every day dealing with subrogation issues so they can more efficiently resolve issues. Lastly, high client satisfaction with regard to the resolution of lien obligations may produce repeat business and/or boost referrals from new clients. Having a client receive a check very quickly after settlement because of efficient lien resolution means a happy client and hopefully a future referral source.

If you have questions about lien resolution outsourcing or the obligations associated with it, contact our lien resolution experts today.

 


 

[1] Lien reductions vary according to the type of lien (Medicare, Medicaid, Private Health Insurance, ERISA, or Military Plans), settlement amount, applicable statutory or equitable arguments, and Plan language.

[2] It is recommended that attorneys initiate lien resolution services prior to settlement in order to accelerate the process and avoid unnecessary delays.

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