James “Jim” Kelly, Esq.
Top Personal Injury Attorney in Las Vegas
There are very few personal injury attorneys in Las Vegas with a background as unique and interesting as attorney James (“Jim”) P. Kelly. A biology major during his undergraduate years at the University of California, Los Angeles (“UCLA”), a former airline pilot, a professional flight instructor, a journeyman electrician for a Strip casino, a law clerk to a Justice of the Supreme Court of Nevada and an associate attorney to a former reality television star, Jim has certainly done a lot of interesting things in his career. All that experience and perspective has given him a background to become an amazing personal injury lawyer. Why? Because he doesn’t just know the law, he also understands the struggles people face having worked in a variety of different fields. Whether he’s negotiating with an insurance company or litigating a case in court, there are few attorneys that know the ins and outs of personal injury law like Jim. His life experiences have given him a perspective that informs how he approaches each case: always putting the client first, bringing an attitude of compassion to the representation and always seeking maximum justice.
One day while serving as the head flight instructor at Santa Monica Airport, Jim was asked to meet with a prospective student. When he arrived to meet the student, he was surprised to see it was none other than a guy with a megawatt smile named Tom Cruise. Yes, the same Tom Cruise from Top Gun fame. The irony of being in a position teaching a famous actor who starred in a movie about being a naval aviator was not lost on Jim. But not one to be star struck or impressed with celebrity, he carried on with his assignment and taught “Maverick” how to fly and helped him earn his pilot’s license.
Looking back upon that experience, Jim notes that he didn’t view it as any big deal: “in my mind, he’s just another person like anyone else” and that “I think what he [Tom Cruise] respected about me was that I didn’t really care who he was because I was more focused on whether he could handle the plane when I turned it over to him as part of his training.” Smiling, Jim further notes: “I was more worried about making sure Tom Cruise didn’t crash the plane and take me down with him!” Keeping it all in perspective, he adds “when you’re thousands of feet above ground looking down on the earth, you quickly realize how tiny and insignificant we all are compared to this mighty planet we call home. The biggest skyscraper looks tiny from up there. Celebrity means even less. It really puts it all into perspective.”
It’s this attitude and down-to-earth perspective that makes Jim a great lawyer. Having the right perspective is not just a big part of life, it’s also a key ingredient to being a good lawyer. Many lawyers get nervous when they go to court. They’re worried about how others will perceive them. Not Jim. His perspective informs his advocacy. He’s seen the view from 25,000 feet above the earth and understands what’s important: integrity, being prepared, showing respect for the judge, the jury and the court and demonstrating compassion for his clients.
COMPASSION AND JUSTICE
If you want to know the kind of lawyer Jim is, you need to know about “June.” She was a lady heading to work one morning when, all of a sudden, her life changed for the worse. She was “t-boned” by another vehicle at a high rate of speed. She remembers thinking at the time of the accident that it was the last thing she needed to have happen. Going through a divorce, she was already financially and emotionally drained. Now, due to no fault of her own, she had yet another problem on her hands! “This can’t be happening!” she recalls thinking. But it was in fact happening. The mental stress soon turned to physical pain. The physical pain in turn required medical attention which meant medical costs and bills.
June sought out an attorney to help her with her accident. After a year with the attorney, she began to worry whether she would ever be compensated for what she had to go through. The attorney would hardly call her and when he did, it was only because she had called first. If the attorney was hardly reaching out to her, how much did he really care about her or her case she thought? One day, he finally did reach out to her asking her to come to his office. When she arrived, after taking time out from work, the attorney explained that it would be difficult to get very much on the case. Why asked June? Well, because the insurance company was being difficult explained the attorney and because they were minimizing her injuries based upon a preexisting condition. The attorney recommended June accept the insurance company’s $30,000 settlement offer. June went home that night deeply depressed over her situation and feeling helpless. Once her attorney took his fee, she wouldn’t even have enough money to pay her medical bills. “What did I do to deserve this” she remembers thinking as she fought back tears.
The next day at work, she mentioned to her colleague what she was going through, including the fact that her physician was telling he she would need a spinal surgery based on the accident at some point in the future. Witnessing both her desperation and depression, her colleague told her to dump her attorney and mentioned a firm that could help. Her colleague recounted to June how this same law firm got him an incredible result. That firm cared about him, showed true compassion and got him a settlement that was 5 times what other attorneys told him his case was worth. The next day, June made an appointment with that law firm.
That law firm is where Jim Kelly works today, in addition to his role as personal injury lawyer at The Vegas Lawyers. June met with Jim and spent nearly an hour with him as he asked her endless questions seeking to learn as much as possible about her case. She was instantly impressed that he cared enough about her case to take the time to understand. She told him about the $30,000 offer that the insurance company had previously made. “Don’t worry” Jim assured her. He told her he would fight for her and that he understood her anxieties and fears. And he certainly did because eventually a lawsuit was filed. After aggressive litigation and showing the insurance company what would happen if the case went to trial, the company folded recognizing it had a real fight on its hands. June received well in excess of $500,000 in full settlement of her claims, an amount that was more than 17 times what the insurance company originally offered and what her first attorney recommended she accept!
The day her settlement check arrived; June choked back the tears. The last three years had been so rough! Going through a divorce, dealing with mounting medical bills and procedures, it was all too much. As she looked at her check, she realized for the first time in three years she felt free and could finally exhale. “Seeing the look on her face made me realize why I went to law school” reminisces Jim, adding “and it’s why I show up every day to work, so I can keep helping people like June.”
A TOP PERSONAL INJURY LAWYER
If you’re looking for a personal injury lawyer because you’ve been in a car accident, a motorcycle accident or an accident involving a truck you need Jim Kelly in your corner. He brings perspective, compassion and skilled advocacy to each of his clients’ cases. Not a flamboyant person or a “big talker,” Jim is the type of lawyer that focuses on his client’s case rather than trying to showcase himself. With a bachelor’s degree in biology from UCLA, Jim understands how to review and read medical records. His training as a pilot and his background as an engineer cause him to bring a very methodical and meticulous approach to each case. A graduate of the charter class at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, School of Law, Jim has an impressive work history having started his legal career as a law clerk for the Supreme Court of Nevada.
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What distinguishes Jim the most is his compassion for his clients and his commitment to providing them outstanding legal representation. A great personal injury lawyer is more than a collection of degrees. A great personal injury lawyer is a person that truly cares about making a difference in someone’s life and getting them back on a path of recovery.