Question: Do the kinds of cases you take demand toughness?
Allred: I'll do whatever is necessary to get the best results for
my client. And sometimes that means smiling and making nice, and
sometimes it means being a warrior and being very, very tough with the
other side. I often say I do live in a war zone for woman, and, believe
me, it's a very ugly war zone. The people who do heart surgery they see a
lot of blood... and often the person who is being operated on doesn't
see as much blood as the surgeon sees in the operating room.
what I do is a blood sport. It has serious consequences, however. So
I'm doing battle with some of the best and most highly paid attorneys in
town. And often they'll play dirty. It will be ugly. It will be
vicious, behind the scenes. And I'm ready for that. I'm ready for that
battle. And that's why they know they have to take me seriously,
because I will do anything and everything that is legal and peaceful to
win for my clients, and I'm ready to fight back.
I'm not the shy
type. If they're in my client's face I consider that they're in my
face. And they're going to have to go through me. And it's not going to
be pretty if they attack my client. I mean, I'm going to stand up for
them. I am going to be strong, and they're going to have to do what is
right and what is just and the only way for them to make peace is going
to be to do justice with my clients. My clients know that and the
opposing party knows that. So when the smoke all clears and the
shouting stops we're going to have to have a just result. And then, and
only then, are we going to be able to shake hands on it. And the battle
Question: Are there things that lawyers
shouldn't do in order to advance the cause of their clients?
Allred: All lawyers are governed by the canon of ethics of their
particular state bar. And there are many lawyers, including high
profile lawyers, who have crossed the lines and done things which they
should not have done, which they knew they should not have done. And
they've gotten in trouble. The trap door is open and they've fallen
right through. They've been disciplined by their state bars. Sometimes
they've been criminally prosecuted and it's the end of their careers.
it's really very, very sad when that happens. I'm happy to say that
we've been practicing for 35 years. We've never been disciplined at all
by the state bar. We've receive many, many commendations from other
lawyers for the great work that we've done for our clients. We are
very, very careful to always follow the ethical canons which govern us,
and we do so because we know they're the right thing to do. They are the
guidelines and they have to be respected, and we will not cross them
for anyone or anything, or to achieve any result.
But we can do
what we can do, and we can do it well and win those hundreds of millions
of dollars for our clients by acting in an ethical way. There are a
lot of battles we can fight. We know what the weapons are that we need
to fight them. And we use those weapons to the fullest extent possible.
So, unfortunately some other lawyers don't exercise the best judgment
that they could exercise. They take unacceptable risks when they cross
those ethical boundaries and we refuse to do so under any set of
Recorded on June 9, 2010
Interviewed by David Hirschman