Ann Ochsner’s Background and Passion
What made you want to become a personal injury lawyer?
Prior to law school, I worked for a plaintiff’s personal injury law firm in Fayetteville, NC. I found the ability to help people, injured through no fault of their own and fighting against powerful insurance companies, to be very rewarding and I wanted to play a more meaningful role in that process.
In your opinion, what sets your firm apart from the rest?
Customer service. Our clients are real people, not just files that sit on shelves, so we strive to provide excellent customer service.
Tell us about a case that you are particularly proud of:
Our client was seriously injured in a collision when a utility trailer became detached from a truck, crossed left of the center-line and struck our client’s car. The insurance company that insured the trailer argued that their policy did not provide coverage for the collision merely because the operator of the truck – a person who had borrowed the trailer and was not a named insured under the policy – could not be located to give a statement about the incident. The case went all the way to the North Carolina Supreme Court. After oral arguments, but before the Supreme Court issued an opinion, the insurance company settled the claim.
What steps do you take to prepare for a difficult case?
Researching the law that applies to the specific issues; identifying and gathering as much persuasive evidence as possible.
What advice do you most often give to your clients & why?
To always tell the truth, even if you think the truth is harmful to your case. Maintaining one’s credibility in a situation where you are asking for monetary compensation is very important.
How do you view your role in the attorney-client relationship?
As a teacher; I want my clients to understand the issues involved with their case so that they can make informed decisions.
Tell us about a turning point in your career:
The first case that I participated in mediation with a client. The case presented legal issues that were difficult for my client. We were able to persuade the defendant that an exception to the general rule applied such that if the case went to trial they had some risk of an unfavorable verdict. We were able to settle the case. Being able to advocate for my client in that situation made me realize the power of effective advocacy.
What types of personal injury claims do you specifically handle?
Automobile collisions, slip & fall cases, dog bites and general negligence.
Why should a prospective client choose to work with your firm?
Because the years of experience of the firm’s lawyers, combined with an excellent support staff that cares about our clients, make us effective advocates for our clients.