Marisa Segovia is the head paralegal and has previously been a receptionist, head of intake, and basically done all tasks at Hill Law Firm. She moved to San Antonio from El Paso in 2016 and has been an invaluable asset to the firm. Clients love her and she loves what she does. Get to know her here.
Justin: Welcome to Hill Law Firm cases, a podcast discussing real-world cases handled by Justin Hill and the Hill Law Firm. For confidentiality reasons, names and amounts of any settlements have been removed. However, the facts are real, and these are the cases we handle on a day to day basis. All right, welcome to this episode of our Hill Law Firm podcast. This is now also going to be a video on our YouTube channel.
We’re doing a series of episodes on meet the team in COVID and shut down days. Just generally there’s too often that we don’t get to meet with our clients early on because either they’re too far away, or they don’t want to come into the office, or for whatever reason, they’ll have a lot of interaction with us prior to really getting to know us. I wanted to take an opportunity to introduce some of the people in my office for those who maybe don’t get in early enough or just want to learn more about our law firm.
I’m here right now with Marissa Segovia. She is really the office manager, kind of jack of all trades, sort of runs the show around here. Marissa, I’m going to ask you a few questions, introduce yourself. When did you move to San Antonio?
Marissa: I moved to San Antonio, I believe it was the summer of 2016.
Justin: Okay. Where were you born and raised at?
Marissa: I was born in Austell, Georgia, and I was raised in El Paso, Texas.
Justin: Okay. I didn’t know you were born in Georgia [unintelligible 00:01:41] El Paso. All right. You’ve been working here for how long, three years?
Marissa: A little over three years now, yes.
Justin: All right. I’ve actually used you as an example. I was asked one time for advice for people seeking jobs, what to do and what not to do. When I was interviewing for a receptionist at the time you came, and you were there about an hour early. I thought you were a different human being because everybody kept counseling or showing up late. You showed up an hour early. What had you been doing up until that time?
Marissa: As far as-
Justin: For a job.
Marissa: – job, okay. I worked at a front desk at a hotel.
Justin: Okay. I think it would be the kind way to say that it really wasn’t the fanciest hotel in town.
Marissa: Correct. That’s a nice way of putting it.
Justin: Yes. When I met with you, I knew if you could handle that, doing night shift at a rough hotel that you could probably handle anything. Why did you apply to work at Hill Law Firm?
Marissa: Really it was for a better job opportunity.
Justin: Fair enough. You had not been involved in the law before?
Marissa: Not at all.
Justin: Okay. You were going to college at the time?
Marissa: I was, yes.
Justin: Okay. What were you studying?
Marissa: Criminal justice.
Justin: Okay. You had some interest in the justice system, and we were a law firm, so it made sense.
Marissa: Yes, it did.
Justin: Okay. When you came over, you applied for a receptionist job. Just honestly, at the time it was me and you, and one other person. A paralegal, you and me, right?
Justin: Then it would have been about a little over a year ago, you got moved up to a paralegal position.
Marissa: Correct, yes.
Justin: Okay. Let’s talk about growing up. You grew up in El Paso. Texas is notorious for lawyer advertisements. I know some of the ones that are in El Paso. I think maybe they had the strong arm out there. They had a few of those. What were your perceptions on personal injury law firms or personal injury lawyers prior to coming to work in here?
Marissa: I would say really law firms in general, I didn’t really have an idea of personal injury work just because I never really had to deal with it. Law firms in general, I would say, I just really thought they’re intimidating, and that’s pretty much–
Justin: Well, it’s kind of true.
Justin: I guess really like most people, generally your experience with personal injury firms at that time had been the TV commercials, the billboards or whatever. You’ve worked here for almost three years now. What’s your perception now just generally of the plaintiffs work, and what we do here in our office?
Marissa: Okay. Now, I see how helpful it is to hire an attorney. Back then, like I said, I just really didn’t think about it too much. Now, especially the type of work that we do, I see that it could take a lot off of a person’s plate.
Justin: We hear that sometimes.
Justin: As it relates to your experience in a law firm, we’re the only law firm you’ve worked at, but you’ve dealt with multiple other law firms because you’re on the phone with them, you hear from them, you hear former clients come in and say, “This is what they said.” Is there anything that you’ve noticed that we do differently as a law firm than what you have experienced or seen from other law firms?
Marissa: That’s a really good question.
Justin: Thank you.
Marissa: I’ve heard a lot where clients call, and they say either they can’t get a hold of their attorney or they’re just not helping them in some sort of way. Here I think that’s what we do differently, in the way of responding to clients and keeping them updated. I don’t think I have ever seen a problem come through. I actually haven’t seen.
Justin: Not one that we know about.
Marissa: Yes. That came through our office. I think that should go.
Justin: It’s important for multiple reasons.
Justin: We could get grieved, they could sue us, they could fire us.
Justin: Which, I mean- and just generally have a bad reputation. Let’s talk about your time here. You’ve worked on a lot of different cases in a lot of different ways. You have become friends with some of our former clients, and they still call and check on you on occasion. We have some that came in here and brought us flowers recently. Are there any specific cases or things that stand out in your mind, as sort of the day you realized, “Oh, we’re working on bigger things here than just making widgets.” We’re working on big important issues in people’s lives. Don’t use their names.
Marissa: Okay. I think the one case that stood out to me was- it was involving two 18-wheelers. Our client passed away, and we represented his wife and kids.
Justin: Four kids.
Marissa: Yes, his wife and four kids. I think that one was- it just–
Justin: Just because of the emotional import.
Marissa: Yes. It hit way differently, and I’m glad how it resulted.
Justin: Yes, it turned out great. I think people who are listening wouldn’t understand– The way our old office was set up, you could hear everything from start to finish from whenever they came in and had their initial consult until they’re still coming in after the case is resolved, and we’re really good friends. I had lunch with them just two weeks ago. Was there anything about that case that changed how you felt about your job? There was a time whenever–
I was a young lawyer, that I had a job, and then there was a time, and when I realized my job actually has like a purpose. We’re serving a higher purpose than ourselves. Did that affect you that way or did you feel that way before? Has there been something different that changed the way you feel about it?
Marissa: That’s definitely how I felt. You realize a lot when you’re actually working through the case and working on the case. Yes, you see a lot.
Justin: Yes. The hours got crazy for a little while. It’s a very heady experience. You got to think from my perspective. I’m probably at that time 12 years older than her youngest son, and she’s put her trust in our law firm to do it. It’s a strange world we’re in, and we got to do really good things for some of our clients, and we did a great thing for her. Let’s talk a little bit about you outside of the office. What are some of the things you like to do? I know you like to hang out with your sister who’s kind of a wild child, but what are some of the things you like to do outside of the office?
Marissa: Yes. I am an avid reader. I do read quite a bit. I like working out. My sister and I really enjoy working out as much as we can, and really hanging out- friends. Nothing too crazy.
Justin: You and Lindsey have started a internal book club that’s basically just you two.
Marissa: Yes. For now.
Justin: You’re in a small office. It’s hard to have a big thing.
Marissa: For now. We’ll get more people involved.
Justin: Yes, maybe Josh.
Justin: You lived in El Paso up until really four years ago. What are some of the things about San Antonio– Well, I have to say one of the things I know you don’t like about San Antonio is you haven’t found a good burrito. What are some of the things about San Antonio you do really like?
Justin: Yes, right. What are your favorite fiesta events?
Marissa: It’s hard to pick one, because I feel like I’ve been going to different events each year, so I’m getting a feel for every one, but honestly all of them are great. I like them all. I think just the environment, seeing everyone together, and we didn’t have anything like that in El Paso.
Justin: Right. Which fiesta events had you done prior to coming to work here? I bet with your sister in [unintelligible 00:09:49].
Marissa: Yes. Definitely in [unintelligible 00:09:52]. I want to say Oyster Bay also with my sister.
Justin: That would make sense.
Marissa: She went to St. Mary’s, so we definitely did the first year I was here. I don’t think we’ve done it ever since then, but I did go to that event the first year. Then, I also went to a couple of events with the firm here after that.
Justin: When we do a fiesta day. We skip out and go eat and drink.
Marissa: That’s always nice.
Justin: What are some of the things you’re hoping to learn as you’re here? It’s sort of, the sky is the limit. The more you want to do, the more you can do. Our job is different every single day. What are some of the things you’re hoping to learn or hoping to accomplish at our firm throughout your career?
Marissa: I think it’s just really mastering it. I learned really everything. I learned something new every day. Every time I learn something, it just makes me want more.
Justin: Sure. You’ve been great about– Anybody understands in any job, you have people that want to learn more and you have people that just want to not get attention. They don’t want the spotlight. You are very consistent about saying, “Hey, next time we have one of those sit-downs here, the three things I want to be taught.” I appreciate that and I think that’s great.
I think that’s important too, that our clients know that whenever they hire our law firm or hire me, they’re hiring you, they’re hiring Josh, they’re hiring everybody in our office who if you’re trying to learn, that’s better for them and better for all of us. Thank you, Marissa. We’re going to do this again in the future. These are just intros, get to know the team. This will be on the Hill Law Firm podcast and on our Youtube channel, so thank you.
Marissa: Thank you.
[00:11:52] [END OF AUDIO]