Posted by anonymous
Susan Henricks IS NOT A TRIAL LAWYER BY ANY TRUE SENSE OF THE WORD. If anything, she is an administrative lawyer. This however, never stopped her during the initial consultation from acting as if she was an accomplished trial lawyer.
In fact, she has very little actual trial experience. It became apparent from an admission by her to my colleague during the trial at which I was a plaintiff that the last time she had been in a court trial was 8 years prior! And that was on behalf of the defendant! And if I recall correctly, that was the one and only time she had made it to trial, ahead of my case. How is that not unethical and unprofessional that she never admitted that before we took her on?
Had she been upfront with us about her almost complete lack of trial experience at the initial consultation I would definitely not have hired her.
Once hired, her strategy I later came to find out, which she never admitted to me, was to work towards a settlement for me as the plaintiff and the defendants ahead of the trial. But I had told her repeatedly from day 1 that I was never going to settle.
Just 2 weeks prior to the court trial and she still had done no preparation for trial. Two weeks prior to the trial, when all her focus should have been on preparing for the trial, she in fact told my previous trial attorney, who had previously handed off all their work to her, that she was not preparing for the trial because she was sure that a settlement would be reached. That trial attorney informed her that he was sure that I, the client, would never settle and that he was sure it would go to trial. She ignored him. And this despite my on-going emphatic insistence from day 1 that I would never settle with the defendants. I know she said this to my previous trial attorney because that trial attorney subsequently told my colleague who told me.
Less than a week - more like 3 days - before the trial, when it finally dawned on her that there really was not going to be any settlement, she used my court expert and my personal assistant pretty much full time to cobble together her legal arguments.
She had committed in writing to have a qualified lawyer work with her as the assistant on the case. She never did that. Instead she used my expert, my personal assistant and her legal assistant to prepare for my case at the last minute.
Her work in the court room was a shambles. She made no effort to educate me on what was going on during the trial process. At one point during a break a former colleague of hers came into the court room and she spent the whole 30 minutes gossiping with him. When I challenged her on the fact that I was paying her more than $300 an hour to work for me and that instead of making small talk with her former colleague she should be focussed on my case, she became belligerent with me. From that moment onwards she actually behaved in court as if she was on the side of the defendants' lawyers and the defendants!
At one point she made a point, in front of me of congratulating the other party's lawyers and telling them something to the effect:
"You know, I think you are really excellent lawyers:!" The other party's lawyers grinned form ear to ear. They couldn't believe their ears. That was intended as a snub to me, because I had pissed her off. When do you see professional sportsmen during a competitive match congratulating and encouraging their competitors who they want to beat during the actual match? Er....NEVER.
I could go on and on about her complete unprofessionalism. How she felt humiliated because I, her client, was insisting that she was being paid to focus on winning the trial and not to make small talk at crucial times and how she then behaved out of spite to her client. It's true I am demanding. But when I am paying more than $300 per hour, I expect full focus and professionalism, not a snake oil salesman past retirement age who commits legal malpractice.
Posted by Rachelle
Susan Henricks was amazing! When my husband's death had significant controversy surrounding his demise, Susan took the case and cleared many issues. She was honest, candid and maintained professional demeanor at all times. My daughter and I were intensely greif stricken and alot of prominent players were involved. She was not intimidated and helped me be strong, although my composure was rather zaney, we steadied the course to an amicable mediation while maintaining most of our privacy. Years later her persistance and integrity have helped to preserve the family legacy and propel justice.
Posted by Linda
Susan has helped save my neck on several