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Dean Brett

Personal injury Attorney at Bellingham, WA

5.0   6 reviews

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About Dean

Learn Dean’s areas of practice.

I grew up on Badger Mountain, in Eastern Washington, on a dry land dirt farm in an area the locals refer to as “Poverty Point.” No TV. No electricity. No inside plumbing. But we did have books -- lots of books. I talked before I could walk, and carried a book everywhere, so my dad used to pat me on the head and say “This one’s going to be a lawyer.”  He knew what kind of a lawyer I would be: a lawyer for real people, not a lawyer for big corporations -- a lawyer for the little guy with a big case. 

The administrators at Whitman College couldn’t understand how a kid from Poverty Point could score so well on the college entrance exams, so they offered me a scholarship.  Moving to Whitman in Walla Walla was a move to a bigger town for me, and like many kids my age, I wanted to move to an even bigger city.  That took me to Stanford Law School near San Francisco, where most of my graduating class went on to large firms in New York, L.A., Seattle, or D.C. But by then I had realized I wanted to move back to the Pacific Northwest.

As an injury lawyer I started out in 1972 doing whatever came in the door, mostly trial work, and soon found that helping people who had been injured through no fault of their own and who were stuck dealing with a heartless insurance company was the perfect place to accomplish my three goals in life: to do good, to do well, and to have fun doing it. 

My family has a long history in horse racing --  my Uncle Lloyd raced as a jockey for 25 years.  You build a law practice just like you build a career as a jockey.  At first you get only horses no one else wants to ride.  If you can get a few of those horses to  finish better than next to last, you get a mount that has a chance to finish in the money. And if you can ride a few of those horses into Win, Place or Show, eventually stables with fast horses looking for successful jockeys find you.   So it has been  with my personal injury law practice:  good results in small personal injury cases brought larger claims, and eventually, after winning a few million dollar settlements and verdicts, I got the opportunity to choose exactly who I wanted to represent.

Ironically, it turned out to be the same people my dad thought I should fight for:  the little guy with the big case.  Real people who are in the wrong place at the wrong time and get injured because someone isn’t being careful -- and who are stuck dealing with an insurance company that refuses to honor their injury claim.

If you’d like to talk to me about your personal injury claim, give me a call –.

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State OR
Status Resigned
Acquired 2009
Updated 12/11/2022
State WA
Status Honorary
Acquired 1972
Updated 01/30/2023

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

Contact Dean

Brett McCandlis Brown & Conner PLLC
1310 10th St
#104
Bellingham, WA, 98225
Brett McCandlis Brown & Conner PLLC
4400 NE 77th Ave
#275
Vancouver, WA, 98662
Brett McCandlis Brown & Conner PLLC
1312 N Monroe St
f179
Spokane, WA, 99201
Brett McCandlis Brown & Conner PLLC
2722 Colby Ave
#105
Everett, WA, 98201
Brett McCandlis Brown & Conner PLLC
S. 720 Main St
#213
Mount Vernon, WA, 98273
Brett McCandlis Brown & Conner PLLC
Safeco Plaza, 1001 4th Ave
#3200
Seattle, WA, 98154
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Reviews

5.0 / 5.0
  6 customer reviews
5 Star
 
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Posted by Olivia | July 26, 2012
Thankful!
This was my first experience in a personal injury lawsuit and I felt very helpless in my automobile accident until Dean Brett took on my case. Dean took the time to explain my case and my options, connect me to healthcare and keep me well informed and empowered to handle my injury and the lawsuit against the insurance company. It was very impressive to witness Dean's intelligence, communication and innate skill in leading the conversation during my depositions and arbitration. It is incredibly comforting to have complete confidence in your lawyer when pressing a case against a large insurance company. Furthermore, Kristeen McMoran, Dean's paralegal, streamlined the communication and was a pleasure to work with. I am very thankful to them! Bottom-line: Dean is compassionate, trustworthy and masterful. I recommend him completely.
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Posted by Hailey | May 12, 2010
Legal Service review of Dean Brett
I have knownDean Brett for a little over 3 years. I was involved in a major automobile accident involving multiple parties. Dean and his staff were unbelievable to work with. Without their expertise in personal injury law I don't know where I would be today. I spent over a month at Harborview Medical Center and then another 3+ months at a nursing home. Mr. Brett and his staff helped to get all my medical bills paid as well as the best treatment possible for all of my extensive injuries. The lawsuit was tied up for well over 2 years, but in the end I was compensated for my loss. I would like to think nothing like this will ever happen again but if it does I know Dean Brett is who I will choose the represent me.
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Posted by Carr Lanham | April 11, 2010
Auto Accident Client
In 2002 I was in an auto accident and suffered an injury to my lower back. This injury put my 20-year law enforcement career in jeopardy. When I started looking for a personal injury attorney I wanted somebody I could trust, had a high level of integrity and was the best at what they do. My search ended with Dean Brett and he lived up to his reputation. My case ended up lasting 6 years. Throughout the ordeal, Dean and his staff were focused on my situation, kept me informed and clearly explained my options. Dean is professional, trustworthy and extremely knowledgeable with the process. When my final settlement was reached I also found Dean to be very caring and compassionate. I would highly recommend Dean Brett for any personal injury situations.
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Posted by Virginia | February 23, 2010
Exceptional!
Dean is that rare attorney with exceptional intelligence, people skills, and a down-to-earth approach to problem solving. I recommend him enthusiastically and without reservation. His handling of my accident case made it possible for me to move forward with replacing my car and with treatment for injuries while he focused on the legal work and dealing with the insurance companies. His paralegal was key to making everything work. She is an unbelievably gifted, super-smart professional who made communications go so smoothly that I never worried about the progress of the case. This review is nothing less than a rave--which is completely deserved. I surely hope I am never again crunched between a truck and another car but if I am ever again involved in an accident I will contact Dean Brett for legal help.
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Posted by Brian. | February 14, 2010
Auto accident client.
I was working as a fire fighter paramedic, and was injured off the job in an auto accident. I was pensioned off the fire department, due to the injury, about two years after the accident. This was five years prior to my retirement. The dollar loss in wages and retirement was substantial. Dean and his staff were very professional, caring and successful in recovering the majority of my monitary losses. Dean is a very good communicator. He offers clear advice and reasonable discussions about what approach will work the best in your case.
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Posted by Terry | February 10, 2010
Review of Dean Brett
I found Mr. Dean Brett to be well informed and an excellent communicator. He always took the time to answer all of my questions, as well as explaining in detail, what to expect as we moved toward a settlement with my insurance company. I always felt comfortable with his guidance and I trusted him completely. I found Mr. Brett to be easy to talk to and I enjoyed his sense of humor. Watching him at work in my mediation, was a work of art. Before calling Mr. Brett about my auto accident, I asked three local attorneys; what attorney would they use if they were in my situation? All three recommended Mr.Dean Brett. They were absolutely correct!
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Cost

Rates
  • Free Consultation 60 minutes
  • Contingency 33%-33%

Resume

AVVO RATING 10.0 (Superb)

Work Experience

  • Partner
  • Brett McCandlis & Brown PLLC
  • 2015 - Present
  • Magistrate Judge
  • United States District Court for Western District of Washington
  • 2005 - Present
  • Partner
  • Brett Murphy Knapp McCandlis & Brown PLLC
  • 2014 - 2015
  • Partner
  • Brett Murphy Coats Knapp McCandlis & Brown
  • 2011 - 2014
  • Partner
  • Brett & Coats Personal Injury Attorneys
  • 2006 - 2011
  • Partner
  • Brett & Daugert
  • 1972 - 2006
View all work experience

Education

  • Stanford University
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 1972
  • Whitman College
  • BA - Bachelor of Arts
  • 1968

Legal Cases

  • $2.3 Million Landslide Claim - Largest Wrongful Death Jury Verdict in Skagit County History at the Time
  • $2.3 million verdict
  • Holz v. Burlington Northern and Whatcom County
  • $752,000 awarded from deadly collision with train
  • French v. Parker et. al.
  • Jury awards $5 million to victim of drunk driver

Associations

  • American College of Trial Lawyers
  • Fellow
  • 2002 - Present
  • Washington State Bar Association
  • Local District Counsel
  • 1980 - Present
  • Association of Trial Lawyers of America
  • Member
  • N/A
  • Washington State Association for Justice
  • Eagle Member
  • N/A
  • Whatcom Museum of History and Art
  • Board of Directors
  • N/A
  • Bellingham-Whatcom Public Facilities District
  • Board of Directors
  • N/A
  • Whatcom County Bar Association
  • President
  • 1985 - 1985
  • Washington State Association for Justice
  • Board of Governors
  • 1982 - 1985
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • English

Honors and Awards

  • Super Lawyer
  • Super Lawyers Magazine
  • 2015
  • Super Lawyer
  • Super Lawyers Magazine
  • 2014
  • Super Lawyer
  • Super Lawyers Magazine
  • 2013
  • Best Lawyers in America
  • Best Lawyers
  • 2013
  • Washington Super Lawyer
  • Super Lawyers
  • 2012
  • Washington Super Lawyer
  • Super Lawyers
  • 2011
  • Washington Super Lawyer
  • Super Lawyers
  • 2010
  • Washington Super Lawyer
  • Super Lawyers
  • 2009
  • Washington Super Lawyer
  • Super Lawyers
  • 2008
  • Washington Super Lawyer
  • Super Lawyers
  • 2007
  • Washington Super Lawyer
  • Super Lawyers
  • 2006
  • Washington Super Lawyer
  • Super Lawyers
  • 2005
  • Washington Super Lawyer
  • Super Lawyers
  • 2004
  • Washington Super Lawyer
  • Super Lawyers
  • 2003
View all awards

Publications

  • Washington State Association for Justice
  • Plaintiff's Environmental Disaster Litigation
  • N/A
  • Washington State Association for Justice
  • Spotting Winners and Losers Early
  • N/A
  • Washington State Association for Justice
  • The Use of Focus Groups (Mock Juries)
  • N/A
  • Trial News
  • Dram Shop Liability
  • N/A
  • Trial News
  • Drunk driver falls through the cracks, causes head on collision
  • N/A
View all publications

Speaking Engagements

  • Electronic Discovery and Live Depositions
  • Taking the Expert Witness Deposition
  • 2010
  • WSTLA Seminar
  • The Art and Science of Persuasion
  • N/A
  • Whatcom County Bar Association Seminar
  • How to Mediate a Personal Injury Case
  • N/A
  • University of Washington Course on Trial Advocacy
  • Voir Dire and Closing Argument
  • N/A
  • Seminar
  • Closing Argument
  • N/A
View all speaking engagements

Attorney endorsements

Received (11)
Given (5)
Endorse Dean
Personal injury Attorney | Aug 08
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. An extremely talented and well respected attorney in the legal community."
Personal injury Attorney | May 26
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse Dean. He is a highly skilled attorney that is well respected in the legal community."
Personal injury Attorney | Jan 06
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Personal injury Attorney | Mar 13
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I highly endorse Dean Brett. Dean has decades of experience and he has developed an extremely impressive record of helping personal injury clients get the settlements and verdicts they deserve. On top of that, Dean is a great guy and very easy to talk to. He really knows how to get the most for his clients."
Personal injury Attorney | Mar 13
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"I look to Dean for counsel on almost every personal injury matter i handle. He has the knowledge and experience to maximize the recovery for his clients in every case he handles. I would not hesitate for a moment to recommend Dean to anyone."
Personal injury Attorney | Jan 13
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I highly endorse Mr. Brett. He is very knowledgeable in this area of the law and a very respected personal injury attorney in Washington."
Personal injury Attorney | Nov 26
Relationship: Worked for lawyer
"I endorse Mr. Brett. He is a first-rate personal injury attorney."
Personal injury Attorney | Oct 17
Relationship: Opposing Counsel on matter
"I endorse Dean Brett. I have had two cases against Mr. Brett, on both matters he represented his clients with the utmost skill, diligence and professionalism. He is an excellent trial lawyer."
Personal injury Attorney | Mar 10
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer's work. He is a great asset to the legal community and I refer my clients with confidence."
Personal injury Attorney | Feb 17
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"I have practiced with Dean Brett in Whatcom County, Washington for 34 years. I first met Dean in my capacity as Chief Civil Deputy Prosecuting Attorney for Whatcom County. Since departing the Whatcom County Prosecutor’s Office in 1986 I have been co-counsel with Dean Brett on many cases. Dean’s primary practice area is serious personal injury including but not limited to, wrongful death, spinal cord injury, head/brain injuries, disc and back Injuries, fractures, burns, aviation crashes and governmental liability. Although Dean’s primary practice area is personal injury, leaving it at that does not go far enough. Dean is a versatile lawyer who is adept at handling high profile land use cases as well as a variety of other high profile cases."
Personal injury Attorney | Aug 25
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Dean Brett is one of the most successful PI lawyers I can think of. He's ethical, highly knowledgeable, and wonderful to work with. This lawyer wins his cases! If you have personal injury matter, look no further. "
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Ethics and professional responsibility
Personal injury
Personal injury
Personal injury
Personal injury