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11616RE: [infoguys-list] Re: Los Angeles, CA

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  • Robert Johnson
    Dec 1, 2007
      You people spend way too much time online. I suspect my cients have many
      more cases than you ever dreamed of. They work cases not get involved in
      ridicolous hyperbole.


      From: infoguys-list@yahoogroups.com [mailto:infoguys-list@yahoogroups.com]
      On Behalf Of Bob Hrodey
      Sent: Saturday, December 01, 2007 7:08 PM
      To: infoguys-list@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: Re: [infoguys-list] Re: Los Angeles, CA

      Empire Pacific Investigative wrote:
      > Thank you for replying, but it seems like you are in the wonderland. If
      you work with the insurance industry, which I have been since 1987, there
      isn't any insurance company that pay's more then $ 75.00 Dollars an hour and
      to top it off, they don't pay for travel time.

      Somebody is obviously living in wonderland but I'm not sure who, Mike.
      If you get into bed with dogs, you will wake up with fleas. Perhaps
      your problem is spending too much time relying on the insurance industry
      to make your monthly nut. Granted, most of my work is plaintiff
      oriented but I have a couple LARGE insurance defense law firms who use
      me - almost exclusively on their pet cases. I bill my normal rate and
      they do not hesitate to send me out to do interviews, etc. in areas
      where they KNOW up front that they will be paying 7 hours of windshield
      time for a 1-2 hours interview.

      Lest you argue that "that's different, you're working for outside
      counsel," I will grant you that. However, I also get calls DIRECT from
      the claims superintendents -based upon my past successes and work direct
      for the insurance company at the same or higher rate.

      > Yes, we are deserve lot more for our work, but the reality is, competion
      and insurance companies know it. The profit margin is extremly low when you
      sub at $ 30.00 an hour after your time, office fees, marketing, employees,
      WC insurance and other fees going a long with it.

      Then you're doing it wrong. Like Sue and Rick, when I see requests for
      "sub-contractors" at $25-$50/hour who are required to be licensed,
      insured, etc. I laugh. I also believe that in such a case, your
      argument about WC expense, employees, etc. have no place in the
      equation. If I conform to your needs with regard to licensing, etc.
      _I_ am the one incurring the expense of WC, insurance, admin, mileage,
      etc. NOT you. If you are billing $75 and paying me $30 (Ain't gonna
      happen, Mike, even if you were being paid $31/hour by your client<g>)
      you - and others like you - are part of the problem, not the solution.

      Who do you think you're fooling? You can't be all things to all people
      and if your pet insurance client in CA asks you to undertake an
      investigation in, say, Nevada, they know or should know that you aren't
      going to be the one doing it. If you take it on for the same rate as
      always, they can form a couple of impressions:

      a) you're ripping them since you obviously can hire somebody else to do
      it cheaper than you're charging and still make a buck (which will really
      help you when you try to raise your rates crying poor mouth<g>)


      b) you're managing the case for nothing and paying everything to the sub.

      How much better would it be to say, "Fine, you want an investigation in
      an area that I don't cover? We can approach this two ways: 1) As a
      favor to you, I'll try to hook you up direct with a qualified
      investigator out there and put the two of you together, or 2) If you
      wish I will find a qualified investigator who bills at my rate or close
      to it and also manage the investigation from here at my regular hourly

      > The only PI's out there that are charging over $ 100.00 Dollars in
      California are not more then a dozen that have several employees working for
      them and continuous work coming in with that rate.

      That might be but again, the reason for this is that folks like you will
      do their bidding for whatever they want to pay.

      I attended a meeting of the WI state association a number of years ago.
      One of the presenters was from the State Public Defenders office. I
      rarely do criminal defense work and would probably NEVER do it for the
      PD. At the time and this was probably less than nine years ago, they
      were discussing the problem with the state pd being slow to pay. They
      were paying these guys $18/hour and $0.21/mile in those days (by
      comparison, IIRC, I was billing $80/hour and $0.40 or $0.45/mile) and
      the rub was that they had to wait in excess of five months after
      submitting their bills and having them approved by the court to get
      their money.

      My solution was simple - take Nancy Reagan's advice and "Just say no!"

      Insurance companies are notoriously cheap - everybody knows that - and
      they force their claims folks (most of whom are good people and know
      where the Bear S**t in the Buckwheat" to parrot the company line. I had
      a claims supt from a VERY large national insurance company call to
      compliment me on a slip and fall case I handled for them on a commercial
      property where they were looking at a settlement cost in excess of
      $125,000 and a potential jury verdict if they rolled the dice of maybe
      $300K or better. I crushed the plaintiff's case and also obtained
      statements from witnesses who were friends of the plaintiff who also
      heard the plaintiff state IN THE PRESENCE OF THE ATTORNEY that the claim
      was fraudulent. Case went from Fortune Cookie status to a pile of dog
      crap or worse in two interviews.

      Claims Supt did not say one word about my hourly rate - $80/h at that
      time - but took issue with my mileage charge of $0.40/mi vs what the
      insurance company pays which she claimed was $0.28/mi. I closed the
      conversation by telling her that I thought it was unusual to save
      somebody over $100,000 and have them complain about something so trivial
      as the mileage charge in that the total difference in the bill HAD I
      knuckled under to her would be about $6.50. If it bothers you, don't
      ever call me again but you WILL pay what I bill.

      I have this sign on the wall in my office. Garfield the Cat is sitting
      back in his easy chair and the caption reads "My Office, My Rules!"
      Words to live by.

      > Anyway, don't have time to write anymore, which I would love to continue,
      but the reallity is there are lot's of people out there that are great and
      are getting paid less then $30.00 an hour.

      They may be great investigators, I'm not arguing that but they are very
      poor businessmen and, quite likely, very poor period!



      Hrodey & Associates Established 1977
      Post Office Box 366 Member of NALI, ASIS, FBINAA, NAPPS
      Woodstock, IL 60098-0366 NCISS, Assoc Det of IL & P.A.W.L.I.
      Licensed in IL & WI (815) 337-4636 Voice 337-4638 Fax
      email: inquiry@hrodey. <mailto:inquiry%40hrodey.com> com or rth@...
      Illinois License 115-000783 Wisconsin 8045-063

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