Michigan Legislators cite Kayrouz for supporting anti-ambulance chasing law
Southfield, MI – Michigan Legislative leaders expressed gratitude to prominent accident attorney Joumana Kayrouz for supporting two new laws that protects accident victims from unscrupulous attorneys known as “ambulance chasers.”
The laws were sponsored by a bi-partisan coalition of legislators led by State Rep. Joseph Graves (R-Argentine Township, 51st Dist.) and State Rep. Ellen Cogen Lipton (D-Huntington Woods, 27th Dist.), and signed into law by Gov. Rick Snyder.
Kayrouz, who is the president of the Law Offices of Joumana Kayrouz PLLC, sent a letter last September to every member of the Michigan Legislature urging them to vote to approve the new laws, which restricts attorneys from hounding victims of accidents and other injuries.
“The first thing an individual who sustains an injury should be thinking about is obtaining emergency assistance, and not be concerned with who should represent them,” Kayrouz said.
Kayrouz said reputable law firms like her own legitimately advertise and publicize their services pursuant to the strict advertising rules imposed by the State Bar of Michigan and the Michigan Professional Rules of Ethics (MPRE). She said she responds to inquiries from potential clients who establish contact with the firm, and not the other way around.
HB 4770 and HB 4771, introduced by Lipton and Graves, respectively, were signed by Snyder on Dec. 27, 2013, creating Public acts 218 and 219. Snyder held a ceremonial signing in his office in January.
A legislative aide to Lipton said, “Joumana’s support was instrumental in bringing together a lot of support needed to get this legislation adopted. Her letter to the legislature supporting the bill was important. Her letter was unsolicited but it was so welcome and it gave the move to get this adopted momentum.”
In a released statement, Graves said, “House Bills 4770 and 4771 will help protect accident victims and will help cut down on fraud and abuse that happens in Michigan’s auto-no-fault system. I am proud of the work done to get this legislation signed and appreciate the support provided by those supportive of the legislation including Joumana Kayrouz. It was wonderful to have Ms. Kayrouz at the ceremonial bill signing and I appreciate her support of this legislation.”
HB 4770, introduced by Lipton, addressed the issue of negligence and details the time period and circumstances by which victims may be contacted either directly or indirectly. HB 4771, introduced by Graves, addressed solicitation and bans any law firm, lawyer or individual on behalf of an attorney from making direct contact with injured victims, their relatives or friends, and providing legal services during the 30-days following an accident.
Knowingly violating the above prohibition would be a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than two years and/or a fine of $30,000 for the first offense and $60,000 for the second offense.
Kayrouz praised Representatives Lipton and Graves, and the House members who also co-sponsored both bills including Rep. Kevin Cotter, Bruce R. Rendon, Wayne A. Schmidt, Marcia Hovey-Wright, Dian Slavens, David Knezek and Stacy Erwin Oakes.
For more information on the legislation or on the legal services of the Law Offices of Joumana Kayrouz PLLC, visit www.JoumanaKayrouz.com.
PHOTO CAPTION: Kayrouz (5th from left) joins Gov. Rick Snyder (center) and legislative sponsors including Sponsors State Rep. Ellen Cogen Lipton (D-Huntington Woods, 27th Dist.) (holding Law on left side) and State Rep. Joseph Graves (R-Argentine Township, 51st Dist.) (holding law on right side). Photo courtesy State Rep. Graves.