If you can’t sleep and want something to put you to sleep immediately, please read on. This is how Pittsburgh car accident and wrongful death attorney Bernard Tully got in the field of personal injury law.
Frequently, people assume that,like doctors, attorneys know what field they are going to practice when they are still in law school. This is not the case at all. Usually what happens is the attorney takes the very first job he can that pays $$ so that he can pay his bills. Often times law students graduating from law school have pretty huge debts. I did have student loans and debts when I got out of law school, but they weren’t astronomical. What happened was I was working for a law firm while I was waiting for the bar results. That law firm did a general practice of the law with no special areas. I must say I didn’t like that too much because there were so many different things you had to be an expert on that it was very frustrating at times.
Then I got extremely lucky and was able to land a job as an assistant district attorney. Quite honestly, if that job had paid more money I would still be there because I really loved that job. I learned just about every aspect of criminal law in my five and one half years at the district attorneys office. I started out in the general trial office and then I was promoted to the theft unit. We prosecuted robbery, burglary and other crime related offenses. I probably did over 100 jury trials in my time down at the district attorney’s office.
Then after a while, I started to think about doing the other areas of the law, namely, personal injury cases. I applied to a firm through the Allegheny County Bar Association and was interviewed and hired. That was a life changing experience. Not so much because I learned everything in the civil area but because of the mentor I had. He was, and is, thirty years later, a very good friend of mine. He taught me so much about the area of personal injury law and how to try cases that I will always be indebted to him.
The thing about being a new attorney at a law firm is that you get the “honor” of trying any case that nobody else wants to try. Therefore, my first injury case involved a woman who was hit by an ambulance that went through an intersection. The ambulance had its lights and siren on but for some reason the client just didn’t hear it and was hit. I probably made more mistakes in that trial than any attorney has ever done in the history of the law but I learned from it.
Continued tomorrow…….