Brandon Yosha stepped into a leadership role at his legendary father Buddy Yosha’s Indianapolis law firm in 2020. He kicked off his time at Yosha Law Firm by playing a major role in winning a $20 million settlement for the victim of a job-site accident.
By 2022, he had already become one of the youngest lawyers ever to be recognized by Best Lawyers in America.
Now, his book From Running Back to Giving Back offers meaningful insights for aspiring lawyers. In its pages, Brandon shares how he went from the gridiron to the courtroom. In addition to sharing his own story of injury and recovery, he also tells the stories of some of the most important cases of his career.
Aspiring lawyers can learn from these stories and Brandon’s insightful commentary on the role of attorneys in today’s world. If you are seeking motivation and passion to advocate for your clients, you can find stories in From Running Back to Giving Back that will inspire and challenge you.
What You’ll Learn in Brandon Yosha’s Book
- 4 Legal Lessons in From Running Back to Giving Back
- Additional stories in From Running Back to Giving Back
- Read Brandon Yosha’s From Running Back to Giving Back
4 Legal Lessons in From Running Back to Giving Back
Let’s take a look at four of the most important legal lessons in Brandon Yosha’s book.
1. Don’t just become an attorney; become an advocate
What is the difference between an attorney and an advocate?
This question is an important one, because it can make a big difference in how you approach your practice. An attorney is someone who is trained and credentialed to practice law in court. Pretty simple.
An advocate, on the other hand, is someone who does the following:
- Identifies the needs of others
- Recognizes when someone lacks the support, resources, or ability to protect themselves from more powerful individuals or groups
- Steps in and advocates for those who need help standing up to those with more power
In the book, Brandon tells multiple stories of legal advocacy at work.
He advocated for a young family whose life was changed when Baby Nina was born weeks early due to an accident. Her mother’s car was t-boned by a driver who blew through a red light. The insurance company didn’t want to treat Baby Nina as an insured person in the car – which would have kept them from making a $50,000 payout to the baby’s medical bills and other damages.
Baby Nina’s parents wouldn’t have had a way to push back against the insurance company without an advocate. In fact, Brandon Yosha advocated successfully for his clients to receive compensation that their insurance company told them would be impossible to provide.
In each of the stories in the book, you’ll learn about how Brandon uses the lessons he learned from his father Buddy Yosha to advocate for his clients, even when they are facing strong opposition.
2. You need to really know your clients
In the book, Brandon talks about his first case as a member of Yosha Law Firm. He was tasked with opening statements and the final argument on damages.
The law firm was representing Wayne Simmons, a construction company employee who was electrocuted on a job site because of the negligence of his employer. Wayne’s whole life was upended; he went from being a young, healthy, active newlywed to a man facing severe chronic pain, PTSD, and multiple disabilities.
Wayne’s wife Amy lost so much, and yet the insurance company only wanted to make a $50,000 payout for their suffering.
It was through getting to know Wayne and Amy that Brandon was able to successfully argue for a $20 million settlement!
How did getting to know them make a difference? Under the mentorship of Nick Rowley (author of Trial By Human) and Jakob Norman, Brandon learned the importance of taking the time to really get to know your clients.
Together, the legal team at Yosha Law Firm learned everything about Wayne and Amy – who they are, how they fell in love, what made them perfect for one another, what their life was like before the accident, how they imagined their future, and so much more.
Only when Brandon had this information could he paint a picture for the jury about how much had been lost by this down-to-earth, loving couple.
The team at Yosha worked together to win that case, and Brandon’s knowledge of the accident victims was arguably what moved the jury to award 400x what they originally tried to offer the Simmonses!
3. Non-economic damages are just as important – if not more so – than monetary losses.
Throughout From Running Back to Giving Back, Brandon offers a lesson that aspiring lawyers should internalize: monetary losses are just one piece of the puzzle.
Money is always part of the conversation when it comes to filing a claim or lawsuit related to a personal injury case. Sometimes lawyers get so focused on fighting for their clients’ monetary damages that they don’t see the value of their non-monetary losses.
Brandon tells several stories about how little insurers wanted to pay, even less than the medical costs of accident victims. He also talks about how little value they place on an individual’s suffering, including:
- Grief over a loved one’s wrongful death
- Untreatable chronic pain
- Disability that changes the trajectory of their life
- The loss of the meaning they got from their career
- Relationships that couldn’t weather the storm of serious injury
- Lost opportunities
- Massive changes in a person’s way of life
In Brandon’s experience, client after client has said that if they were given the opportunity to have all of their injuries go away instead of getting a huge settlement, they would choose a life without pain and loss.
In the book, Brandon tells the story of a little girl named Norah who was killed when her mother’s stalled vehicle was struck from behind by an inattentive driver. Norah’s family’s suffering goes far beyond their medical bills and funeral costs. They also lost their precious daughter, whose life was stolen from her by another person’s carelessness.
There is no price that you can put on Norah’s family’s suffering and grief. In a heartbeat, they would choose to have Norah over any settlement they could be offered. Brandon writes in the book:
“Of the thousands of injury cases our firm has handled in the past 60 years, my father can’t recount one case where the client’s economic damages, such as medical bills, exceeded the non-economic damages – pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of love and companionship, loss of equality, and human dignity. So, too, in my own practice, my clients’ economic damages have never outweighed their non-economic damages.”
Always keep in mind that losses are about more than just money your client owes, has spent, or lost access to because of their injuries.
4. You have to fight for justice because others will try to prevent it
Many of the stories in Brandon’s book share a similar theme: his work to bring justice to his clients, even as powerful parties try to prevent that justice from being achieved.
This is a frustrating reality, especially for accident victims who may feel like it’s hopeless to even try to put up a fight against such powerful groups like insurers and employers. However, lawyers have the opportunity to actually make a difference in these situations!
Aspiring lawyers should remember that they play an important role in holding powerful parties accountable, especially when there has been an attempt to downplay the significance of the victim’s injuries or losses.
Additional stories in From Running Back to Giving Back
There are many more stories in Brandon’s book, including:
The Yosha family legacy
Brandon Yosha’s Jewish ancestors were from Monastir, Macedonia. Almost his entire family was sent to the Treblinka death camp and murdered by the Nazis in 1943. Only his father, Abe, was spared, because a friend sponsored him to come to America years earlier.
These tragic Holocaust losses drove Brandon’s father Buddy to become a top trial lawyer who has always fought for those who need an advocate. Brandon now continues this pursuit of justice.
These are a few of the other powerful legal advocacy stories that are told in From Running Back to Giving Back:
Jessica Revell and her son Sam
Jessica suffered severe leg injuries in a car crash that left her disabled. The insurance company offered $180,000, but Brandon secured a $2.2 million verdict at trial.
Harvail Singh Dhillon
Harvail Singh Dhillon was an Amazon contractor who was killed when he got out of his truck because he was confused about where to enter the Amazon facility. Another driver had been injured at the same spot weeks earlier, and Brandon argued that Amazon owed these drivers a duty of care to provide clear instructions on how to safely access the property.
Margaret J. and Monica J.
Margaret J. and Monica J. were sexually abused at work by a known rapist who was hired by their employer, Avis Rent-A-Car, in 1976. Brandon’s father Buddy Yosha sued Avis for negligent hiring. His efforts on their behalf also brought about changes to corporate hiring policies nationwide.
Frank Cornelius wasn’t one of Brandon or Buddy’s clients. Rather, this is the true and ironic story of an insurance lobbyist in the 1970s who worked hard in Indiana to cap malpractice payouts at $500,000. Fifteen years later, a fall caused Mr. Cornelius to sustain a knee injury, which led to medical errors that cost him his leg and his ability to work.
When Mr. Corelius tried to sue for damages, the cap he lobbied for limited his compensation to $500,00 – not enough to cover his soaring medical bills. The last several years of his life, which ended in suicide, were spent suffering because of the damage caps he had championed.
Read Brandon Yosha’s From Running Back to Giving Back
Brandon Yosha’s book From Running Back to Giving Back offers invaluable lessons and motivation for aspiring lawyers. Through compelling real-life stories and insightful commentary, Brandon shows the importance of advocacy, truly knowing your clients, prioritizing non-economic damages, and fighting for justice against powerful opponents.
Any student interested in pursuing a meaningful, client-focused legal career should read From Running Back to Giving Back. Brandon’s passion for advocacy leaps off the page, making you reflect on why you chose law in the first place. His stories will re-ignite your desire to make a difference as you learn to balance knowledge, skills, and heart in your practice.
You can purchase From Running Back to Giving Back on Amazon now. Let his experiences in the courtroom motivate you in your law school studies and beyond!