It says something very positive about a law firm when 50 of the people working for it have been part of that organization’s family for 15 years or longer.
In the case of Weitz & Luxenberg, it says that those lawyers, paralegals, administrative assistants, clerical workers, technical support specialists and others really like the job of helping people who’ve suffered an injury at the hands of careless or malicious corporations and individuals.
And one thing these dedicated, in-it-for-the-long-haul employees of W&L have learned throughout their years of service with the firm is that there are a great many injured people in this world who not only need — but deserve — the strongest help possible in their individual quests for justice.
So the W&L team comes to work every day, shirt sleeves rolled up, ready to go to the mat for the legal rights of clients — be they rights arising from an asbestos cancer litigation, a drugs and medical devices injury case, a medical malpractice lawsuit, an environmental toxic tort action, a consumer protection matter, or any number of other personal injury or mass tort litigations.
W&L is a plaintiff’s law firm. It doesn’t represent corporations or wealthy interest groups. It represents working people.
And that makes W&L different. It makes this a law firm that attracts a special kind of employee.
Then, once those employees start working for the firm’s clients, they find the job so satisfying and fulfilling that they want to stay, year upon year upon year.
For long-timer Grace Hilaric, it’s a matter of great personal pride to work at W&L. ”I admire the care and concern W&L has for clients,” says Ms. Hilaric, an Asbestos Litigation unit representative.
”I have the most respect and admiration for the firm and appreciate the opportunity I’ve been given here,” she continues.
Yocasta Ramirez is a clerk in the W&L Asbestos Bankruptcy department and has been with the firm for 15 years. ”I’m very proud to work for W&L,” she says. ”My job is great and I learn something new every day.”
Ms. Ramirez credits her unit’s leader, attorney Lisa Nathanson Busch, as having been a tremendous influence in her life, both professionally and personally.
”Ms. Nathanson Busch has contributed awesome support, training and guidance,” she says. “W&L has great leadership, great lawyers and we always meet clients’ expectations.”
Ms. Ramirez also says she appreciates the firm’s mission ”to help clients obtain financial support and to get them the justice and financial compensation that they deserve.” She likes, too, that ”W&L fights for every penny a client is entitled to.”
Asbestos Litigation law clerk Monica Hidalgo shares that sentiment and says she feels as though W&L “has been my second family since the moment I started working here.”
That’s understandable, since W&L is — in Ms. Hidalgo’s view — a family-oriented firm “that cares passionately about our valued clients no matter what language or background they come from. I am very proud to be part of the W&L family.”
Then there is Celeste King, data entry supervisor. As she explains it, working for W&L is uplifting because it’s a firm that cares about people.
”Sometimes things happen in our private lives that are unexpected,” says Ms. King. “When that happens, W&L listens and works with you.”
Hazel Garcia, an administrative assistant in the Asbestos Bankruptcy department, says ”It’s been a pleasure to work for W&L in fighting for the rights of our asbestos claimants.”
Client Relations supervisor Leslie Limage contends that employee longevity is the norm at W&L because the firm brims with ”many employees who work passionately on case preparation and representation.”
Ms. Limage adds that W&L feels like home to her due to the fact that ”we develop intimate relationships to the point of establishing dear friendships apart from our professional obligations. I truly love my clients.”
Deborah Savours has, for 17 years, held the position of secretary to attorney Ellen Relkin of the Drugs and Medical Devices Litigation unit. ”I have had the fortunate opportunity to work with some of the most talented legal professionals in the country during my tenure at W&L,” she says.
”I have worked closely with the attorneys on some of the most complex and renowned pharmaceutical and products liability cases in history. I am very fortunate to be part of such a dynamic and talented team of professionals.”
Another 17-year employee is Asbestos Litigation unit secretary Gina Nicasio. What makes her eager to come to work each day is the opportunity to help people.
”Many of our clients are injured and in my own small way I can help them during a difficult and confusing time, whether it is answering questions about paperwork they received or getting them connected with one of our attorneys who are working on their behalf,” she explains.
”I have connected with many of our clients on so many levels,” Ms. Nicasio adds. ”And I appreciate all the opportunities that W&L has afforded me in my pursuit of a satisfying paralegal position.”
Antoinette Waite, a secretary in the Medical Malpractice unit, attributes her loyalty to the firm as a natural response to the high caliber of her teammates.
The team’s qualities, she says, are reflected ”in their demeanor, polite manner, understanding and assertiveness, and, of course, their superior knowledge of the law. Supporting staff including myself are beneficiaries of these reflected values.”