Recently, State Comptroller Matanyahu Engelman issued a warning regarding a troubling trend in which lawyers are approaching wounded service members in hospital rooms and persuading them to sign representation agreements on the spot. This practice allows lawyers to obtain rights from the Department of Defense. Engelman expressed concern that these individuals may be signing agreements without fully understanding whether representation is truly necessary.
The Ministry of Defense’s Department of Rehabilitation has emphasized that wounded military personnel receive all necessary services at no cost during their hospitalization and for the first four months of rehabilitation after discharge. While some individuals may require legal representation during medical commissions following this period, it is important to note that there are strict limitations on the fees that lawyers can charge for representing patients during medical examinations at the National Insurance Institute. However, no such restrictions exist for medical examinations conducted at the Ministry of Defense.
In response to this issue, the Bar Association has stated its intention to take action against lawyers who actively approach wounded service members with offers of their services, particularly if done so in a hospital setting. It is crucial that wounded individuals are fully informed about their legal rights and have ample time to consider whether representation is necessary before making any decisions.