Question

Rachel Anderson is a bankruptcy lawyer who represented Phyllis Swift-arrow in a bankruptcy case. During the bankruptcy, Phyllis was injured on the job and asked Rachel whether she would handle her new workers’ compensation and personal injury case. Since Rachel is a bankruptcy lawyer, she referred the case to Ming Liao, a workers’ compensation specialist. Ming, specializing in only workers’ compensation cases, would not take the personal injury part of the case.
Rachel told Phyllis that she would continue to look for a personal injury lawyer and called many of her colleagues to ask them whether they were interested in the case. Because the case involved complex issues for little recovery, the lawyers declined it. The statute of limitations had almost expired, so Rachel prepared and filed a complaint for Phyllis, listing Phyllis as in propria personna, or representing herself.
Rachel continued to search for a personal injury attorney for Phyllis and mentioned to Ming that she was unable to find one. Ming recommended that Rachel call Albert Franzmeir, who agreed to take the case.
Phyllis indicated that she would agree to a referral fee for finding Albert. Rachel feels that she is entitled to the fee, but Ming insists that he is entitled to it. Albert says he does not want the case if it will involve a referral fee war between Rachel and Ming.
a. How would you resolve this problem?
b. In your opinion, who is entitled to the referral fee? Why?
c. What are the advantages of paying a referral fee in this case?
d. What are the disadvantages of paying a referral fee in this case?



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  • CreatedFebruary 12, 2015
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