VCL Personal injury lawyer Sam Bektas banned for overcharging vulnerable injured workers

VCL-personal-injury

Oh my god, you wouldn’t believe it but our “friend” the rogue lawyer Sam Bektas has been banned from practising  law!


Do you remember a couple of months ago a few injured workers happened to post on the blog that they’d had problems with Sam Bektas. Their comments (see below) were not defamatory or anything or over the top, they merely commented that they felt that Bektas/VCL was overcharging them , and next thing Bektas posted derogatory comments about his former clients and former employees on the blog also disclosing details of their cases. Then he had the audacity to serve aworkovervictimsdiary.com with a lawsuit threat for defamation!!!

We’re not at all surprised that he has been banned from practising – his grossly unprofessional and unethical behaviour on the blog said it all!

VCL Personal injury lawyer Sammy Bektas banned for overcharging vulnerable injured workers

Madame-Zena-authorBy o-Author Madame Zena
Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal has a banned rogue personal injury solicitor Sammy Bektas of Victorian Compensation Lawyers from practising for 4 years.

Mr Bektas was banned for gross overcharging of vulnerable injured workers and accident victims, many of whom had no English language skills. In addition, Mr Bektas was also found guilty of failing to inform his clients of their rights and failing to act on his client’s instructions.

Sammy “The Rogue” Bektas is well known to us here at Diary of a WorkCover Victim. We’ve have had a number of complaints posted on this blog by injured workers whom have fallen victim to Mr Bektas’s grossly unprofessional and predatory conduct.

We applaud the Victorian Legal Services Commissioner for investigating and bringing charges against Mr Bektas.

The Tribunal also found Mr Bektas “had shown no remorse or insight into his offending” – well we found that too! It was only a couple of months ago Mr Bektas posted comments on this very blog denigrating his former clients and employees who dared to speak out against him – the audacity and arrogance of this man!

From our understanding Mr Bektas was the principal at Victorian Compensation Lawyers. Given Mr Bektas’s immediate ban from practising, it remains unclear the fate of VCL. VCL’s website was still up last night, however we would recommend any injured workers who currently have matters with VCL to consider making alternative arrangements for legal representation.

http://www.vcl.com.au/

Lawyer who overcharged clients banned from practising

From: Herald Sun December 18, 2013
Shannon Deery

sam-bektasA ROGUE lawyer who overcharged clients tens of thousands of dollars has been banned from practice for four years.

Personal injury lawyer Sammy Bektas charged exorbitant fees to his vulnerable clients a tribunal today ruled was an unethical breach of his duties.

Mr Bektas, 38, charged clients tens of thousands of dollars to conduct research then added loading charges to pay for his expertise.

When sceptical clients asked for itemised accounts, he warned that too would incur an additional fee.

In a four-day hearing last month the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal heard one complainant was charged more than $126,000 for Mr Bektas’ work on her WorkCover claim.

Of that, $39,670 was for research.

Another former client, who was charged $122,660 for a TAC matter, was billed for 240 hours of research totalling $43,530.

He was also slugged a 65 per cent loading for “skill and care” and a 25 per cent uplift totalling about $89,000 that was not allowed to be charged.

Handing down her decision today VCAT Vice President Pamela Jenkins found the majority of Mr Betkas’ 10 complainants did not speak English as a first language and had poor verbal skills.

In addition to overcharging, he also misinformed and failed to inform clients of their rights, and did not act on their instructions.

Mr Bektas pleaded guilty to eight charge of professional misconduct and five charges of unprofessional conduct brought by Victoria’s Legal Services Commissioner.

The tribunal found while there was no evidence Mr Betkas misappropriated clients’ money, he had shown no remorse or insight into his offending.

“The misconduct committed by (Mr Betkas) strikes at the very essence of a competent solicitor’s practice,” Judge Jenkins said.

“There is no doubt that such behaviour inevitably and deservedly brings the profession into disrepute and warrants sanctions sufficiently severe to reflect appropriate condemnation.”

Mr Betkas has been banned from practice for four years.

After his suspension ends he could be forced to wait a further two years before becoming eligible for a full practising certificate.

 

Shannon.deery@news.com.au

[Source: http://www.news.com.au/national/victoria/lawyer-who-overcharged-clients-banned-from-practising/story-fnii5sms-1226786107016]

Some of the comments that were posted on our blog re VCL Sam Bektas

I worked for VCL and let me tell you that if you sign up with them your case wont be touched for many months and your file has a high chance of going missing. Staff turn over is high so your file wont be touched and when it does it will be by a law graduate who Sam bektas just throws in the job without any proper training or qualifications and THEY ARE THE ONES WHO GIVE U ADVICE AND THEYRE STILL STUDYING. When payments are made by an insurer you will have to call VCL and ask for your self. No one will contact you simply because if something isn’t urgent you wont be touched. Do not trust this inexperienced firm. Sam Bektas is manipulative and puts on a shitty serb accent to make you think he is in touch with his clients  – wrong. all he cares about is money and not the quality of work.

HI – I am already with VCL and can’t believe how bad they are – and snakes as well.  I have even been changed for my email complaining about the service.  I have been made aware at just how expensive these guys are and the more incompetent they are the more they make off me.  They are serioulsy bad – and I too am being managed by a law graduate – who at times I have corrected on the law!!!!   When I know more than he does that’s really pathetic!

I would like to change law firms but don’t know what is involved – will I have to pay them their high fees even if this is the reason why I am leaving them.  I don’t mind paying for good value – but these guys are crooks – and the worst sort – they prey upon people at our weakest times in our life.  Samy convinced me to sign on with them by telling me that my employer was looking to fire me – just by looking at the RTW plan!!!! 

Can someone help me with information on querying their costs – and recommend someone else that I can hire to take me case to completion?  Has anyone been successful in getting a good outcome from them?  Do I stay or do I go?   THis is a new sort of hell!

I feel like I’ve been injured three times- first at work, second by my employer and thirdly by VCL.

My story is similar to yours, I have had over 3 graduates looking at my case. I’ve had to explain it to each of them and I’m wondering if I will have to pay for each time I have to re-explain it. I would send an email with multiple questions and receive an answer to only one of those questions. I am not a slot machine and my injury has cost me so much in so many areas. I was convinced by Sam to sign on with them too. I understand now why he showed so much care until the contract was signed and then he snatched up the signed contract and that was pretty much the last time I heard from him. I’m feeling like I am being led by them with a blindfold on. It seems that we do the suffering and they make all the money. I believe that you can make a complaint to the legal services commissioner of Victoria if you are unhappy. I hope it all works out for you.

I have emailed Sam today and will wait for a response if nothing tomorrow I will call then go straight to ombudsman. Maybe we can all file a class action if we are all getting same service from vcl.

Hi – It’s Sam Bektas here

This forum and online comment has only just been brought to my attention and I must say I am a bit disappointed in reading this information, and am certainly concerned at some of the points that are being raised.

[CENSORED NAME] – in your case our firm acted for you in winning several claims over a period of at least 3 years. Unfortunately, on the final case we handled you did not agree with the advice we provided to you (which is your prerogative) so you decided to engage another legal firm.

I understand that they took a different approach and you subsequently have lost this claim. Whilst this is disappointing, I do not think it fair that you state there are no decent lawyers when it comes to work cover and personal injuries.

The difference in our final fees was due to part of the amount being recovered from WorkCover.  I am happy to fully explain this with you and discuss your current situation at any time should you wish to do so.

 

Hi VCL – It’s Sam Bektas here
 
This forum and online comment has only just been brought to my attention and I must say I am a bit disappointed in reading this information, and am certainly concerned at some of the points that are being raised.

VCL – It is disappointing that you tried to post here under an alias rather than your reveal your true identity.

However, if what I have been able to discover is correct, you were actually employed at VCL, and that employment was subsequently terminated within the first week of commencement.

Whilst you may have had some level of disappointment, this in my opinion, would not place you in a position to make valid judgement on the overall processes adopted at VCL.

I am happy to work with you where I can and if there is anyway we can assist you in finding graduate employment elsewhere please contact me directly.

To Mr Sam Bektas – Victorian Compensation Lawyers

Your comments are way out of line and completely unprofessional and not to mention highly unethical.

Firstly, that you have publicly disclosed on here details of your former clients matter. This is completely unethical and unprofessional for a lawyer to do so.

Secondly, that you sort to publicly denigrate on here a former employee of your firm. Again, highly unprofessional conduct for a principal of a law firm.

Mr Bektas, your comments say more about your character and lack of professionalism and ethics than they do about your former clients and employees that you sought to publicly denigrate.

I knew nothing about VCL until now. But after reading Mr Sam Bektas, principal of VCL’s comments, my advice to any injured worker is now DO NOT use Victorian Compensation Lawyers. Mr Bektas’s conduct above says it all.

(By Madame Zena)

To Sam Bektas from workcovervictim: name mentioned by Mr Bektas has been censored as per our disclaimer and comment policy – “you may not attempt to reveal any other user’s real world identity”

Hi,

My TPD claim with VCL was successful, But very expensive ($20,000.00) Your story sounds very similar to mine, paperwork lost and I also question everything but they don’t care. If you think you have been overcharged contact lsc.vic.gov.au (Legal services Commissioner) They were very helpful

Hope this helps

 

Hi J,

When I read your comment regarding this lawyer I got really worried because he is currently looking after my case. I was injured at work by the way and when I had a meeting with him I was very skeptical but he persuaded me and I signed. He did not tell me the percentage how much he charges he said it is up to the courts and I don’t know how much he will charge me if he wins. Can you give me some advice please on whether if its too late to pull out I’ve been with him for a while now or if he overcharges is there some one I can make complaint to about him. He did charge me a lot for the Impairment Benefit. Sorry for the long e mail but I could not find any reviews about him and I’m really worried now. Thank you so much for sharing your views and warning people. God Bless you…

 

I would like to think that I could add to this and recommend a decent lawyer, unfortunately as far as work cover and personal injuries are concerned there isn’t any. They are all out to line their own pockets, at the detriment of your health and well being. One thing I can tell you is to stay away from [CENSORED-LAWYER PRINCIPAL THREATENED US WITH A DEFAMATION LAWSUIT], they are very bad news, especially [CENSORED] who is a thoughtless,unsympathetic and will do anything he can to screw you over and make money. He sent me a final invoice for $52,000 which was questioned in court and then bought down to $17,000, just a bit of an indication of how bad this so called lawyer is. PLEASE KEEP AWAY AND SAVE YOURSELF A HEAP OF HEARTACHE!!!!!! (the censored person is Sam Bektas)

 

Hi – I’m not sure if this comment has gong through so I’m resending….

I have been with VCL  – and am really unhappy with them…  I feel like I get passed around the firm and they get a payment for it.  I would like to leave them and go to another firm.  What does this require – am I going to be out of pocket even more if I leave these guys – they are very greedy and have no empathy for me as a client.  has anyone had experience with this?  I would appreciate advise  – I think it’s time I go with one of the lawyers recommended on this site. I wish that I had seen these comments about Sammy Bectas before I signed on – but Sammy made me very fearful that I was going to lose my benefits as well as lose my job and needed them to protect me.  Now I need a firm to protect me from these guys.  Any one out there got advise for moving?

 

What can we say, but that KARMA IS A BITCH!

 

 



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12 Responses to “VCL Personal injury lawyer Sam Bektas banned for overcharging vulnerable injured workers”

  1. Love it

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  2. Nothing sickens me more than those who seek to profit from the misery of others, and from injured and very vulnerable injured workers. Through their greed and in many cases, incompetence, they can do so much more damage to the emotional and financial situation of the people they are supposed to be helping. But the top award for complete low life must go to the corrupt IMEs who have betrayed their professions, to assist the sick and injured. There is something particularly disturbing about doctors who are dishonest and unethical.

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    protect yourself December 19, 2013 at 9:27 pm
  3. Well said @protect yourself it is very disheartening to see these so called professionals denigrating themselves, and probably what they originally stood for when they started out, just so they can make a living. All because they are obviously no good at their jobs or they wouldn’t be sluts for the insurance companies.

    Surely they had ideas of helping people when they started their professions? Yet because they are incompetent they choose to degrade themselves at the poor injured workers expense.

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  4. Like the other prick in coke a cola glasses got caught with his snout in the trough any hooo haaa na it ain’t news its us malingers that make headlines and tele, he can sit next to fish face on the karma bus .

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  5. He is now qualified as an Insurance company senior case manager (No Morals)

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  6. This loser should be banned for life. So glad I left that place!

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  7. I have just recently found out about VCL, I was with them since 2011 he promised me so much and really delivered nothing, VCL took about $65000 + for my super claims and then asked me to transfer $15000 to get the ball rolling for my serious injury claim and now nobody can tell me where that money is. Throughout the time I went through 10 different solicitors at VCL and now I have been transferred to another company that has taken on VCL cases so its like I have to start all over again I am so disappointed with my original choice to go VCL all it has done to me and my family its just added to the crap that we have been through with the insurance company. So thanks for nothing Sam.

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    • Go to the legal services commissioner re your fees as these figures are extroidanary high. You would probably get some return, and most of his files were given to Vince Verducci lawyers who is a mate of his and I would not be surprised if he is not somehow still involved. A very shady character.

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      • I went to VCL for an opinion on my case. They told me I was out of time to lodge my IB Claim. I nearly had a heart attack. I then told them I had been told the statute was 6 yrs by another law firm. The lawyer went and got the principal and then came back to apologize and say he had mixed up the TAC with WorkCover. The principal (looks like the guy above) came in and placed a contract in front of me, gave me a pen and told me to sigm. I told him I wanted to read the contract. He told me to stop wasting his time and sign the contract or I could leave. I left immedaitely and never signed or went near that place again. Looks like Karma was watching out for me that day.

        I totally agree with the posts above – make a formal complaint to the Legal Services Commissioneer.

        As for selecting a solicitor. Interview several of them and make an informed decision. You are “hiring” someone to work for YOU! Don’t let them make u feel intimidated and that they are in charge, they are NOT. YOU issue THEM with instructions.

        I know it’s hard when you are scared and alone and have little knowledge of what’s happening, but it’s a process and this is just one of the many steps. Good luck.

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    • Sam Bektas also has handed in his practising certificate in a supreme court hearing earlier this year and has been struck off permanently.

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      • Restores my faith in Karma…….now all we need is for Karma to find some of the sniveling little spineless arseholes in the WorkCover Scheme.

        Off topic – I recently reviewed a Surveilence report and noted that they search Facebook to snoop on us. I completely forgot that having a life is “not allowed” if u have an injury. My point is that I wonder how these f/wits would feel if it was done to them.

        I am going to have a bit of a sticky beak at old FB and see whether the PI, my Case Manager and a few choice cretens at WorkCover are are in public view.

        A special note ot Management here: I’ve been told that if u are injured and u are caught volunteering at anything, even if ur shrink recommends it for ur sanity, they will terminate u if they find out i.e. they say if u can perform volunteer work then u have a work capacity (just be careful is all with what u write on here).

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        • Well Barry i agree and facebook snoops should be shot and not allowed to look into your facebook page without your permission or unless they are your real friends. Slimey bastards how dare they!!!!!!!!!!!! We should be allowed to live when they push us in a grave and throw dirt on us. Were are our injured work cover rights. there should be strict laws in hacking into our accounts. I rest my fucken case !!!!!!!!!!!!!!
          I am over the corruption and bullshit Work Cover Insurance companies put us through we all agree YES I SAY!!!!!!!!

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