Can you tell me about yourself?
My name is Neal Sobol. I graduated from Southwestern University School of Law in 1986, and was admitted to the California Bar Association in 1987. I have practiced personal injury law for almost 30 years.
Why should I work with you?
We have handled over 12,000 personal injury cases involving soft-tissue injuries, wrongful death and serious injury cases. We have successfully handled other civil litigation cases as well. We represent claimants (plaintiffs) only, and we do not represent or otherwise work with insurance companies. My office has the capability to litigate larger cases too and we have done so successfully over the past 25 years, including trials, arbitrations and mediations.
Briefly, what is your approach in dealing with chiropractic doctors?
The main things we seek to achieve are: (a) quality representation of your patient's interests (b) protection of your lien rights; (c) having good communication with doctors and their patients; (d) maximizing payment of doctors' bills; (e) providing free consultation to doctors and their patients (I will go to your office to do so on many occasions, if requested); (f) help you to best utilize med-pay coverage so that it is used for payment of your services, and is not mis-used; (g) always being available for your questions and concerns. I also invite you to go to the For Chiropractors section of this site for more information.
Have you ever been disciplined by any Bar Association for any reason, or do you have any disciplinary action pending against you at this time?
No, I am proud to say that I have never been disciplined by any Bar Association, at any time, during my 30 years as an attorney. Nor do I have any disciplinary action pending against me at this time.
Have you yourself ever been treated by a chiropractor?
Yes. I have a great deal of subjective experience with chiropractic treatment, and respect for it. I seriously injured my neck at the age of 5 and unfortunately did not receive any chiropractic treatment. I also seriously injured my low back in my early 20s. Once again I was not smart enough to have obtained chiropractic treatment. In my mid 30s I was introduced to chiropractic treatment and I am happy to say that due to this treatment I am asymptomatic in spite of what you would see on my X-rays or even on my low-back MRI.
Do you maintain membership in any chiropractic societies?
Yes, I am an adjunct member of The California Chiropractic Association. I receive the monthly Chiropractic Journal that I read very closely. I attend meetings of Local Chiropractic Chapters throughout Southern California, and occasionally do seminars for ICAC (International Chiropractic Association of California).
What geographical area(s) do you cover?
Our 30 years of experience involves claims and lawsuits in Los Angeles, Ventura, Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties. We will proceed to trial or arbitration on these cases when warranted. We have also litigated cases in San Diego County and in the State of Arizona. We also routinely conduct free seminars for chiropractic doctors on the personal injury aspect of their business — those are usually confined to Los Angeles County, although some are held in Orange and Ventura counties.
What kind of topics do you cover in your free seminars for chiropractors?
Useful information and tips for dealing with insurance companies, the "how-to" of report writing in personal injury claims; lien protection strategies; the importance of med-pay coverage and how best to process it; tips on how to deal with computerized claims evaluation programs, and more. We also have question and answer sessions. Please see the For Chiropractors section of this site.
If I refer my patients to you, will they be well cared for?
We believe we do an outstanding job of taking care of our clients and getting results for them. Please take a look at the Testimonials section of this site for a sampling of (unsolicited) client comments. Also, please feel free to check out our rating on Yelp.
Will you help me in determining if a patient has a good case?
Yes, I will give a free consultation to your patient and, after handling over 12,000 of these claims, I can usually tell right away if it is a good case or not. I can also give you a good assessment of how likely you are to be paid for your services.
Can you tell me more about Med-Pay?
Please click on the For Chiropractors link to bring you to our newsletter on the topic. If you have any questions after that, please contact me.
Do you hold the client's "med-pay" until the end of the claim?
No. "Med-pay" is money that should go directly to the treating health care provider. However, the medical payments themselves belong to the client. An attorney, as the legal representative for that client, has the right to take this money and put it in his client's trust account. Unfortunately, in many cases, the only reason an attorney does this is to have leverage at the end of the case to possibly reduce your fees. That is not a practice I will ever engage in and I suggest you avoid attorneys who do so.
My patients sometimes don't want to use their "med-pay" for fear of having their rates increased. How can I handle this?
Under the law in California, ones rates can't be increased due to an accident unless that person is 50.1% at fault in the accident. Once this is explained to patients/clients, they usually understand that they are protected and don't mind using their medical payments. And even if your patient is mostly at fault in the accident, I still find that once the patient understands the terms of the med-pay portion of their policy, he/she will agree to its use.
Does it make a difference how soon a patient contacts you?
Yes, very much so. There are many ways that a client can adversely affect his case by delaying contact with an attorney. Please see our newsletter on this entitled Early Representation in the For Chiropractors part of this site.
Do you handle cases in which the patient already has had an attorney, but is not happy with his/her representation?
Yes, we frequently have been hired by clients who are not happy with the attorney they first hired (usually because of poor communication from that attorney's office). The law makes it easy for a client to transfer from one attorney to another, with no extra cost to that client/patient. It also makes it easy for that client to obtain a copy of the case file for review by another attorney. Of course, we prefer to examine the status of the case and what the former attorney has done with it before we commit to representation.
What are some of the studies you use to support your negotiation of my patients' soft-tissue injury claim?
Of course this will depend on the nature of the specific injury and claim. The best response to this question is to refer you to our abstracts of various materials which you will find in the For Chiropractors section of this site.