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In 2013, ABC News reported that Yelp filed a lawsuit against a San Diego law firm for allegedly posting fake positive reviews about their law firm on the Yelp website.  The lawsuit asserts that employees “pretend to be clients and review their employer on Yelp.  The law firm later defended their reviews and established the defense that the lawsuit was retaliation by the internet review giant for the law firm’s earlier suit against them over abusing their dominant internet position to gain advertising contracts.  While we can’t speak to the merit of Yelp’s lawsuit against the law firm or the law firm’s lawsuit against Yelp, we can understand that this could definitely raise some questions about the authenticity of “client” reviews out there on the internet.   Between reading reviews Google Plus, Avvo.com, Lawyers.com, and BBB you can get lost in a sea of lawyers that are all working withing the same practice area, who all say that they are the right choice for you.  So how do you choose who to hire?

Our firm prides itself on its high level of client satisfaction.  We don’t look at our relationship with our clients as merely a business transaction.  We make friendships with clients that last a lifetime. Clients that we’ve helped 15 years ago still call us up, refer folks to us and send us Christmas cards.  At the end of each work day, each highly-skilled team member at our firm can be proud that they did their very best to do right by their clients.  We are transparent in how we do business through sharing many of our successes weekly on our Facebook and other social media and our clients’ reviews speak volumes of our passion, our work ethic and level of commitment.   But if you’re still trying to make a choice on which law firm to call, we encourage you to do your own research.

To us, reviews are essentially “word of mouth” in cyber form and they can make difficult decisions a lot easier but you have to be your own watchdog and keep an eye out for certain fake review warning signs.  We’ve written this guide to help you weed through potentially fake reviews, good reviews and even bad reviews:

  1. Consistently similar vernacular (language usage), perfect error-free writing, or prim and proper writing across several different reviews. 
  1. No awards or accomplishments to compliment the reviews.  A lawyer or law firm often receives honors and notoriety in tandem with an influx of reviews and client success stories.  If one is there but the other isn’t, that should cause you to raise an eyebrow.  You want a lawyer who not only has the respect of his client’s but also of his peers and the justice system.
  1. Look for client reviews that reveal slightly more detail. Generic reviews like “he turned my wreck into a check,” may be to the point, but they are easy to write.  Often, counterfeit reviews are those that can be left quickly.  A happy client will take time to write.  They will sometimes bravely share their story.  They will sometimes share names of individuals or give you insight to the treatment they went through.  Reviews like this are hard to fake and are generally always thoughtfully written and genuine.
  1. One bad review does not a bad law firm make. When searching for a lawyer it is important not to discredit a law firm because of one poor review;  a business with multiple bad reviews- certainly;  but not one.  A bad review is really helpful feedback that a smart business will utilize to strengthen and rebuild that client’s trust. A bad review may lend credit to the validity of the other reviews.  If you read 100 amazing reviews about a business and there was not one adverse or negative comment about that business that it should raise some red flags as to the authenticity of those 100 incredible reviews.

We hope that this guide has helped, and that you are better-enabled to examine all of your choices.  Yes, of course we want to win your business and we want your search to land with us and our incredible attorneys and staff at Rocky Law Firm.  However, we are understand the stress that comes with choosing which lawyer to call and then trusting them with helping you re-write your future after a devastating wreck or work-injury.  We know how hard it is and we honor that trust every day with every new client who walks through our door and every old friend who exits it.