Doug Zanes Talks Importance of Injury Attorneys as Government Watch Dogs

by Doug Zanes | Last Updated: June 3, 2014

Our CEO/Responsible Attorney Doug Zanes was a guest on political commentator Emil Franzi’s Inside Track radio show May 17, talking about his recent victory for a client who sued the city of Tucson after falling in a manhole due to a faulty manhole cover.

The discussion then ranged to the role of injury attorneys such as Mr. Zanes as well as law schools and the inability of new law school grads to get jobs because of a glut of attorneys.

Conservative activist and property manager Shaun McClusky joined Franzi as co-host and the two conservatives started off the interview a little skeptical about the need for injury attorneys.

However, Doug told them attorneys are part of the system of checks and balances on government and insurance companies.

“It’s unfortunate, because accidents happen and people get hurt. I think there is a misconception that injury attorneys are pro-accident; that they’re all ambulance chasers. In my perfect world, quite honestly, we wouldn’t be needed. But we are, because people do get hurt,” Doug said.

“Insurance companies handle cases the way that they do. Governments handle cases the way that they do. And in a lot of those cases – not all of them, but in a lot of those cases – the injured person doesn’t have somebody to help them and are kind of out of luck.

“If the trial lawyer performs his role correctly, appropriately and professionally, it all balances out the way that it should. From a trial lawyer’s standpoint, most of the trial lawyers that I know view their job as just that – we’re kind of the check and balance against the government and the insurance company who aren’t going to treat the injured person fairly if there isn’t someone there to help them.” Doug said.

Doug then gave the example of the recent General Motors recall in which the company knew it had a faulty product for more than a decade but covered it up and even counter-sued people who sued them. It was injury attorneys who were able to use the courts and finally hold the company accountable and compensate victims as well as force a recall.

“Most of the trial lawyers I know view their job as representing the clients and getting them a fair shake in the system and a fair resolution,” Doug said.

When the two talk show hosts asked Doug about attorneys who abuse the system, Doug admitted there are some, but the system takes care of them, too. Juries don’t like plaintiffs and attorneys who are clearly trying to enrich themselves at the expense of others, or the government and taxpayers.

He said that’s not the case at Zanes Law.

“Our goal is to take the cases that should be brought to court and bring them to a positive resolution that’s successful for the client and allows everyone to move forward. I’m OK with losing a case that needed to be brought to the court’s attention,” Doug said.

As for law schools and too many attorneys, Doug admitted that he didn’t know the solution. He told the two hosts that law schools are in the business of providing education. It’s not in their best interest to discourage new students from enrolling, but at the same time, the glut of attorneys are depressing salaries, especially for county prosecutors. In some cases, the prosecutors are making less than the paralegals for the defense attorneys opposing them.

Neither the hosts nor Doug said they knew what the solution was, but Doug suggested that even if a law school grad couldn’t get a job as an attorney, the quality of the education makes them excellent candidates for all kinds of jobs, including starting their own businesses.

“It’s a wonderful education and you can take that education and do a thousand things, whether it’s going into business for yourself or someone else,” Doug said.

To listen to the entire interview, click here. The interview with Doug starts at about the 22 minute mark.

Doug Zanes: Founding Attorney Raised in Douglas, Arizona, and went to college at Arizona State University and graduated from law school at St. Mary’s University School of Law in Texas. Doug began practicing law in Phoenix Arizona in 1997.
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