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About me

I’d like to tell you a story about why I help people who have claims against insurance companies.  Its 1991 and I’m a law student living out-of-state when my mom calls to tell me she’s been burglarized.  She is scared and upset.  Fortunately nothing sentimental is stolen.  I naively tell mom that her homeowners insurance will compensate her for the things that were taken.


It turns out that the claim process is more upsetting for mom than the break in.  They make her jump through all kinds of unnecessary hoops and try to low ball her on the value of the claim.  The insurance company, who she has been with for over 20 years, treats her like she did something wrong. 


I do everything I can to help, but at this time I don’t really know how insurance companies work and what can be done to make them to treat mom fairly. We feel helpless at the company’s “take it or leave it” attitude. 


Over the past 20 years, I have learned how to level the playing field for people like my mom.  In the courthouse, insurance companies have to answer to a jury, not shareholders.  While most cases do not go to trial, you need the leverage of a trial to make them treat you fairly.


If you have been injured through no fault of your own and are facing an insurance company alone, please give me a call. I’d be glad to help.




Practice areas


  1. Car Accident: 60%
    17 years
  2. Personal Injury: 20%
    17 years
  3. Wrongful Death: 20%
    17 years



Contingent (20-40%), Free consultation (60 minutes)

Attorney endorsements

11 total 

Are you an attorney? Endorse this lawyer

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    Bill Coats is an outstanding lawyer. He cares about his clients and works hard to protect their rights. We have worked together on cases and have also confered on difficult cases. I have always been impressed with how hard Bill works and how well he represents his clients. I highly recommend him to anyone who has been injured and needs help.


    Charles Paglialunga Personal injury Attorney
    Relationship: Worked together on matter

  • No photo

    I endorse this lawyer's work. Bill and I worked on a trial together a few years ago and he's smart, hard working, and honest. A great trial lawyer.


    James Harris Personal injury Attorney
    Relationship: Worked together on matter

Contact info

Coats Law PLLC

114 W. Magnolia St., Suite 501
Bellingham, WA, 98225


We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
Million Dollar AdvocateMillion Dollar Advocates Forum2014
Multi-Million Dollar AdvocateMulti-Million Dollar Advocates Forum2014
Rising StarSuper Lawyers2007
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
Managing PartnerBill Coats Law2014 - Present
PartnerBrett Murphy Coats Knapp McCandlis & Brown2010 - 2014
PartnerBrett & Coats Personal Injury Attorneys2006 - 2010
AttorneyBrett & Daugert2003 - 2006
Assistant Attorney GeneralWashington State Attorney General's Office2001 - 2003
Trial LawyerWhatcom County Public Defender's Office1995 - 2001
Association namePosition nameDuration
Whatcom County Judicial Evaluation CommitteeMember2014 - Present
Washington State Association for JusticeEagle Member2003 - Present
American Association for JusticeMember2000 - Present
Washington State Association for JusticeMember1995 - Present
Whatcom County Bar AssociationMember1995 - Present
Washington State Association for JusticeBoard of Governors2009 - 2011
Legal cases
Case nameOutcome
Thorough investigation leads to insurance coverageLargest single-eye injury settlement in state
Helping with medical bills$545K settlement
Finding the experts necessary to prove our case.$115K for injury from umbrella
See all legal cases 
Publication nameTitleDate
Whatcom County Bar Association NewsletterIn Defense of Jury Trials2014
JD Supra Legal NewsWashington Supreme Court corrects lower court ruling on faulty road design case leading to injury car crash2013
Tulane Maritime Law JournalTowing the line on damages for purely emotional injuries cognizable under the Jones Act: Plaisance v. Texaco, Inc.1993
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
Tulane University Law SchoolLawJD - Juris Doctor, graduated with honors1994
University of WashingtonN/ABA - Bachelor of Arts1991
Speaking engagements
Conference nameTitleDate
Electronic Discovery and Live DepositionsPreparing your client for a deposition2010
WSAJ Legal Education SeminarsEarly Years of Litigation Practice2009