“It has been very gratifying to generate recoveries that help our clients get on with their lives. That is the ultimate reward of being a lawyer.” ~ Brian McKeen
McKeen & Associates celebrates its 40th anniversary this year. The firm, which specializes in medical malpractice and personal injury, has garnered historic verdicts/settlements on behalf of its clients, and taken on some of the most complex cases in the nation. Brian McKeen, founder and managing partner, shares his thoughts on the past four decades practicing law and growing a small firm into a powerhouse.
McKeen & Associates is now 40 years old. How has your firm changed since its start?
We have grown exponentially. In 1983, we were a very small firm. Today, our firm employs 18 lawyers and a staff of more than 80.
To what do you attribute your firm’s success?
Our success is due to the results we have been able to generate. In medical malpractice and other personal injury cases, results are everything. Year after year, we’ve garnered top results in verdicts and settlements. Results are what drive our success. Winning for our clients is the bottom line.
How does your firm differentiate itself from other firms? How have you been able to garner the results which have enabled your firm to grow?
I believe we strive harder, look deeper, and have a greater level of expertise that allows us to find the basis of liability. Finding the negligence is often not readily apparent to the uninitiated. We aren’t afraid to take on difficult and complex cases. We aren’t afraid to go to court. We have consistently demonstrated an ability to win and win big, even in the hardest and most complex cases.
How has the legal industry changed through the years?
The movement towards Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) is one, which means less time in court for younger attorneys. I’m concerned for how we are going to bring along the next generation of trial lawyers. Another is so-called “court reform statutes” which were misnomers that placed unfair caps on damages, made discovery more expensive, time consuming, and wasteful.
What would like to see change in your practice area?
Caps on damages for medical malpractice must go. We have been advocating for this since their conception. These ridiculous caps cheat plaintiffs out of full justice. Our current statute on reduction of future damage to present cash value robs plaintiffs of fair recovery for medical expenses and loss of earning capacity.
You’ve been in the city of Detroit your entire career, what are the biggest changes you have seen through the decades?
Detroit was thriving in 1983. It was difficult to watch how over the years more and more businesses left for the suburbs. Before COVID, things were bouncing back quite nicely. I’m hopeful that Detroit’s resurgence will continue.
What has been the best part of your practice?
It has been very gratifying to generate recoveries that help our clients get on with their lives. That is the ultimate reward of being a lawyer, knowing that you are helping them and their families. I’m also gratified to know that by virtue of our results, we’ve lifted the bar for settlement values for other attorneys that benefit everyone.
McKeen & Associates, P.C. is a leader in representing individuals injured by the negligence of others, particularly in or by hospitals and physicians. In addition, McKeen & Associates, P.C. has successfully represented clients injured in a variety of other circumstances. Based in Detroit, McKeen & Associates represents clients in both federal and state courts brought throughout Michigan and the United States. For more information, visit www.mckeenassociates.com.