Burger and a Beer

Huge grass fed bison hamburger with chips & beer

What’s a Burger and a Beer Have to Do With Law?

My wife and I went out for a nice dinner to celebrate my birthday recently. It was at a place that takes your credit card for a non-refundable reservation. It is considered one of the best restaurants in Chicago. We both dressed up a bit like adults and had a delicious meal, complete with wine pairings to complement the courses.

Was it worth the money? Was the food that fantastic? I don’t think either of us were completely sold on either point. We’ve had more adventurous, envelope-pushing food. We’ve had better values in our meals out. And we’re spoiled even when we dine at home, because Beth is a fantastic cook.

But all this got me thinking about high-end restaurants, where the plating is often done with tweezers, and every detail is anticipated. In fact, we both kept referring to scenes from the television series The Bear as well as the movie The Menu. We even noticed service staff communicating by hand signal.

Sometimes, you are just as happy with a big, juicy burger (assuming you’re a carnivore) and a good beer (assuming you drink). Whatever your comfort food, sometimes that is what you crave. Sometimes you just want a simple meal done perfectly.

What I Do

I operate as a one-person law firm and always have. While there are some complex cases where I work with other law firms, such as medical malpractice, I handle everything else myself.

Because my “sweet spot” is primarily automobile cases with values in the middle range (roughly $50,000 to $1 million), I am able to handle these all by myself, while still providing personal attention to my clients.

Similarly, my workers’ compensation practice deals with serious injuries but ones from which the injured person generally recovers from enough to return to work at some point.

My goal is to do a great job on specific types of cases. Cases I’ve handled many times before. With injuries I know backwards and forwards. In settings in which I’ve spent my entire career.

I’m not aiming to take cases nationwide.

I’m not trying to take multi-million dollar cases involving toxic torts, class actions, or police brutality. I stick to what I know, what I excel at, and what I know I can do the best for my clients.

The Experts

With a few exceptions, such as certain intellectual property lawyers, , lawyers in Illinois cannot call themselves “experts.” We say, instead, that we “concentrate our practice in personal injury.”

However, some of those firms I partner with on those complex medical malpractice cases are what I consider “experts.” They handle cases at a high level, with meticulous attention to detail, and pull out all the stops. They employ the best experts to testify (and that is costly!). They employ teams of superb lawyers who are assigned to certain aspects of each case. These are not young lawyers “getting trial experience.” These are excellent lawyers handling cases in an excellent manner every single time, supervised by some of the best lawyers in the country.

For these types of firms, the cases I handle are “too small” value-wise.

They stay in their lane; I stay in mine.

Molecular Gastronomy or a Burger

There are certainly times when you simply want a once-in-a-lifetime experience. You want to be able to eat the menu, or eat food so beautiful you just have to photograph it.

And sometimes you just want homemade mac and cheese (Beth’s rocks!) or a perfectly grilled piece of salmon. Or a great burger and a beer (incidentally, that was our first date!).

Some legal cases demand the expert attention and resources of a groundbreaking, well-resourced lawyer, akin to the molecular gastronomy chefs.

Other cases, while also very serious, do not need that. They just need to be handled with dignity, honesty, thoroughness, and competence. And, like a great burger or a perfectly grilled steak, or whatever your comfort food of choice is, there is nothing better.

My goal is and always has been to treat my clients well, to respond personally to every single call, email, or text. To know every aspect of every case. To take every extra step necessary to maximize the value of each client’s case.

Think of my firm as the place to get the best burger and craft beer in town. At the same time, I have access to the greatest chefs in the world with just a phone call or email, should your case be the type that demands it. You can get a perfect meal either way.


  • Some lawyers are highly specialized and focus on complex, high value cases only
  • My focus is on middle-range cases of a type I’ve handled many times before
  • This allows me to get great results for my clients and do what I’m great at doing
  • When a case is beyond my abilities or resources, I partner with excellent lawyers who can take it the rest of the way
  • This all serves my clients well

Contact Chicago Personal Injury Lawyer Stephen Hoffman

As in all cases involving injury, dog bites or injuries, workers’ compensation, medical malpractice, or other injury and potential liability, if you have been hit by a vehicle, immediately get medical treatment, report the crash to police and your own insurance company, and contact a lawyer with expertise in your type of case, such as bicycle accidents or pedestrians hit by cars.

If you've been in an accident and have questions, contact Chicago personal injury attorney Stephen L. Hoffman for a free consultation at (773) 944-9737. Stephen has over 30 years of legal experience and has collected millions of dollars for his clients. He is listed as a SuperLawyer, has a 10.0 rating on Avvo, and is BBB A+ accredited. He is also an Executive Level Member of the Lincoln Square Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce.

Stephen handles personal injury claims on a contingency fee basis, which means you don’t pay anything up front, and he only gets paid if you do. Don’t wait another day; contact Stephen now.

Categories: Personal Injury