She was looking for more opportunity. With help from the LNC STAT course, she is now one of the most successful Legal Nurses around.
Learn her story below.
Jamie was looking for more opportunity. With help from the LNC STAT course, she is now one of the most successful Legal Nurses around.
Jamie is a REAL LNC STAT Course Graduate
After graduation, I had been so excited to start my career as an Emergency Department Nurse in the Caribbean, but felt like there was more that I wanted to do with my career. At the age of 23, my first year as a nurse, I began researching Legal Nurse Consulting and the career opportunities it provided.
"...I felt like there was more that I wanted to do with my career."
I still wasn't quite sure what to do until a fellow nurse and friend came to me a year later with a solution. She was the medical reviewer on all cases at her husband's law firm and was tired of all of the work and wanted to pay me to train! I was ecstatic and felt that this would be a great way to start my career.
"I began working in the law office...I was learning bits and pieces of the processes"
I began working in the law office part time while continuing to work as a full time ER nurse at the age of 24. I was learning bits and pieces of the processes that my friend had implemented in records review and report writing. I was able to learn from two amazing attorneys that helped show me the legal process. I was so grateful for this opportunity and happy to be an in-house nurse (at a basic in-house salary). Boy did I not understand what was still out there for me and just how far I could go!
"...I came across Veronica and LNC STAT. I was blown away by all of the information and training that they offered..."
In 2012, I moved from my little island to Florida and wanted to grow my business. I was baffled at where to start. I had been so lucky having my previous work fall into my lap. I was still working for them part time via remote access and began to again actively look into an actual certification. That is when I came across Veronica and LNC STAT. I was blown away by all of the information and training that they offered and at the best prices I had seen anywhere. They were located in Tampa, where I live, and most important to me...Veronica was
"I ordered the course and took the live class...all while raising a three month old baby girl and planning a wedding."
still actively working as an Expert of Medical Legal Studies and as an Advanced Legal Nurse Consultant (ALNC), so I knew she was the one I wanted to teach me. After one phone call with the office, I was in love. They not only wanted to help train me, but they also wanted to mentor me along the way. I was hooked! That same month, I ordered the course and took the live class...all while raising a three month old baby girl and planning a wedding. It's doable; I just knew I had to have that never say never attitude and push forward.
Even though I had worked as a "Legal Nurse Consultant" for two years prior to taking the class, I felt like there was still so much to learn and so many ways to improve upon my work product. And marketing...what marketing? I had no idea how to even start this process.
I had been used to working as an International Registered Nurse in the Caribbean where laws and court systems are quite different. The matter in which you go about legal cases and attorney consultations is quite a bit different than in the states. As a nurse we learn to be able to adapt to any situation, which is what I did and what I encourage you to do as you take on new challenges, jobs, and even opportunities internationally.
The Caribbean courts system is extremely slow; sometimes taking months to a year to rule on certain motions. Some cases were actually initiated prior to 2008 and are still ongoing or finally in the trial process. Trial dates get set and postponed, set and postponed, so it was always very important to be prepared for everything. Because the Caribbean consists of many islands, some United States, some British, some French, and so on, the rules were very different. For instance, many of the U.S. island residents often travel to neighboring islands. The issue of jurisdiction plays a role. If a resident from a U.S. Virgin Island traveled to St. Kitts and was staying at a U.S. entity owned hotel, and suffered an injury and/or illness, they could bring the lawsuit up for trial in a U.S. Virgin Island court. Shuttling employment documents, medical records, and reports between the islands and the U.S. mainland can be very time consuming and frustrating when facing deadlines. Witnesses, employers, plaintiffs, etc...., and depositions are complicated by International laws and travel. If a member of the St. Kitts hotel witnessed the injury, they may be asked to give a statement and be questioned for deposition. The attorney then must travel to and comply with the laws on St. Kitts regarding request of deposition appearance and subpoena, if necessary, along with setting up a court reporter on site. I learned a lot by truly listening to my attorney during discussions about motions, appeals, and judgments. When I didn't know what he was discussing, I would ask. He was always grateful that I was asking and it showed him that I was invested in him and his firm to give them the best product that I could.
Fast forward a bit to me becoming certified as an Advanced Legal Nurse Consultant; I felt like I knew so much more and my mind was just racing with all of the new improvements I could provide for my attorney in the U.S. Virgin Islands. I was still making my "in-house" salary for my hours worked and knew now that all of my time and effort was worth way more. I wasn't about to just call them up and say "Hey, I'm certified now, I deserve a raise". I wanted to show them what my certification could do for them and let them tell me how invaluable I was. So I did. I took my own time to revise a chronology with fact sheet and to summarize the medical records into a narrative report with images for reference. I then sent it to my lead attorney at the firm. I called him up the next morning with my comments on the case and asked him what he thought of my new work product.
"...by the time I had said hello, he was telling me how much he liked the new report."
I didn't even have to ask, because by the time I had said hello, he was telling me how much he liked the new report and its layout with information. I told him that I wanted to expand my business here in Florida and felt it necessary to have more knowledge at my disposal and that everything I had learned through my certification was going to help them on every case. I asked him about re-evaluating my billing rate with my new enhanced reports. In exchange, I would continue to work on any and every case they needed me on, because they were my priority having shown me this path in the first place. He first let out a big sigh of relief and said "thank goodness" then told me he would discuss my rate with his other partners. I received an email the next day with notification of a raise and a thank you for continuing to improve and show a love for my work. I was working on over 200 cases at a time.
"I cannot emphasize it enough, continue to pursue your craft, and continue to learn."
As I continue to work, I have learned how vital it is to continue to pursue learning opportunities along the way and always ask questions. I had the opportunity of working with Veronica to review of a case as an internship just after receiving my certification. Along the way I used the new methods I had learned in the ALNC course, but truly listened to what she had to say during our meetings and reviews. I took her constructive criticism on my reports and changed them to make them better. I cannot emphasize it enough, continue to pursue your craft, and continue to learn.
From my time working with Veronica, we stayed in contact and I got paid to help her review several other cases and in turn she referred me to another ALNC that was requesting help on some large mass tort cases. This career can take you so far by the relationships that you build and the networking that you experience. The mass tort nurse trusted Veronica's opinion of me and my case work; I knew that I could not let her down. I have since worked three other times on mass tort cases with this nurse and she referred me out to another nurse with whom I now also consult!
"I can actually say that since 2010 I have worked hundreds of legal cases as a Legal Nurse Consultant."
To date, I have worked on multiple mass tort litigation cases both environmental and product safety related, totaling hundreds of plaintiffs, 13 medical malpractice cases, almost 30 personal injury cases, physician contract and forced retirement cases, and more. I can actually say that since 2010 I have worked hundreds of legal cases as a Legal Nurse Consultant. It is a juggling act sometimes, as I have had 3 different firms all email me on the same day, all with immediate action required to create reports and review records.
I have found it is very important to keep my office organized and to have a detailed calendar of deadlines. Upon receipt of mass requests, I quickly review them to gauge time required for each and then order them accordingly. Most importantly, I always email them back immediately to let them know I received their request, I respond to what they were asking, and I give them an estimated time of completion. I have been told in my reports that not only am I detailed oriented, but that I leave out the fluff that just wastes the attorney's time. I provide them with my nursing knowledge and explain in simplified detail why information is important. Find your little something that makes your attorney want to not live without you and become a part of his system.
I am so grateful for the path my life has taken and I can't imagine any profession other than being an Advanced Legal Nurse Consultant.