bill gilbert - gilbert law firm - spokane washington
Personal Injury Attorney

Bill Gilbert

Growing up in a farming and ranching community in Montana, Bill Gilbert is as comfortable on the back of a horse as he is making an argument in a courtroom. As kid growing up “western”, Bill learned three principles early on:

  1. Work hard.
  2. Your word is your bond.
  3. If you have to fight, make sure nobody wants to come back for seconds.

The community he grew up in had a reputation for raising tough kids. Bill spent more time than he’d care to remember defending himself, standing beside friends in fights, and defending other kids who couldn’t defend themselves.

His willingness to fight transformed into a passion for law that Bill never could have predicted.

bill gilbert - gilbert law firm - spokane washington

When Bill and his team walk into the courtroom, the gloves come off. For Bill, once that fight for justice begins, winning is the only option on the table.

The form of the justice the client will receive is the only debatable issue. Whether it be financial compensation for an injured or aggrieved client, change to a company’s policies and practices, or changes in the law; Bill won’t stop until he has squeezed every ounce of justice out of that courtroom.

Bill’s reputation as a tenacious litigator has gotten him embroiled in fights for justice across the United States as well as in Canada, and Central, and South America. He is known for taking on, and winning cases that other lawyers refuse to take.

Bill has helped clients faced with the most difficult times in their life. But his successes have made an impact beyond his clients’ individual interests.

He has helped communities to become safer by forcing change while representing his clients.

He has worked on medical malpractice cases that led to changes in hospital policy and practice to improve patient care and safety.

He has tried a wrongful death case involving the illegal sale of alcohol to a minor that led to a $716 million jury verdict; and helped change the culture of underage drinking and driving by triggering a large-scale social response.

Bill and Ashley worked a case involving sexual molestation of a child on a school bus that led to a change in the school district’s busing policies.

He has worked on a case that held a government contractor accountable for millions of dollars in fraudulent billing.

He has worked on a case that changed jail policies for pregnant inmates in Maricopa County Arizona.

He worked on one of the cases that forced the trucking industry to prohibit the operation of laptops and other forms of transmission while the vehicle is moving.

Forcing these changes, and having a positive impact on society, is a priority for Bill. But what’s most important to Bill isn’t the big number verdicts and settlements, policy or practice changes, prosocial changes, or the attention-grabbing headlines.

What’s important to Bill is that his clients know he hears them, that he has been in their shoes, that he understands, and that he will go to the mat for them and their cause.

To really understand someone’s struggle and pain, and work with them to change their life, you need to walk in their shoes.

And Bill has.

He has worked hard his entire life – but hasn’t always been successful.
He has been comfortable financially – and he has been completely broke, living out of his truck.
He has loved deeply – and grieved the loss of loved ones.
He has rejoiced at the birth of a child – and held more than one grieving parent close after telling them their child was not coming home.
He’s been an athlete with a strong body – and dealt with medical adversity – including heart valve replacement surgery.
He has been happy and content – and he has suffered through depression and anxiety.
He’s been married – and divorced.
He has been blessed with fatherhood – and struggled through the pain of a child’s disappointment.
He’s been accused of things he did – and of things he did not do.
He has made mistakes – and he has learned from those mistakes.

And Bill’s journey to becoming a trial lawyer was not exactly a traditional jaunt through academia. No — Bill took the scenic route.

If you were to ask Bill’s high school principal if he would have ever dreamed that Bill Gilbert would someday become a great trial lawyer, the principal would have laughed in your face. Bill was not a model student in high school. He joined the military right out of high school – and that changed his life. After serving his country Bill went on to play football for the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. But Bill wasn’t quite ready for college … or maybe it is better said that college wasn’t quite ready for Bill. So Bill left school to embark on what he affectionately calls his “walkabout” years.

During this period, Bill basically did whatever he felt the urge to do in the moment. He worked hard – and he played hard. If you ask Bill about retirement he will tell you he was retired until he was 30 … so now he has to work until he dies. During the period, Bill worked construction, bartended, worked on ranches, skied professionally, and guided fisherman and hunters in rural Montana and Alaska. He also traveled extensively, and spent time in some of the most remote places on the planet.

Then he had a child. A beautiful son that made him realize that he needed to find some focus.

So Bill moved home to Montana and became a deputy sheriff.

The more time Bill spent with the Sheriff’s office, the more disillusioned he became. He was troubled with how some officers dealt with people, and he felt powerless to do anything about that.

When Bill ultimately met with the County Attorney to discuss his concerns, he was told, “if you really want to make a difference, you need my job.” So in true Bill form, he quit his job and went back to school with the goal of becoming a lawyer.

Getting to law school was a journey in itself. Bill had to figure out how to turn his U.W. River Falls “fun credits” into workable credits so his GPA would reflect his true academic ability. In the end, he figured things out, and was accepted into Gonzaga Law School on a half-ride academic leadership scholarship.

Coming out of law school Bill spent his first few years working for a high-volume personal injury firm. It didn’t take him long to realize this “puppy mill” form of practicing law was not his cup of tea. In his view, this profit-driven type law practice was a disservice to clients, the community, and the legal profession. Frustrated, Bill set out to find like-minded attorneys who became lawyers so they could make a difference for clients and the community, and were not driven by financial gain. Ultimately, Bill developed a law practice that is client and community focused and results oriented.

Bill’s life experiences shine through in his practice. Because he has personally experienced so much in life, he can relate to almost any situation a client may find themselves in.

Bill treats his clients and his staff like family. He works hard to become personally and emotionally connected to his clients. He says, “If you’re going to war for someone, you’ve gotta love them”.

When Bill and his team go into the ring for you, you know they love you … you will feel it, and you will see it in action. There is no quit in this group; as Bill often says … “never let go of the sock.”
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Accolades:
  • Selected as a Super Lawyer by his peers every year since 2012
  • Repeatedly listed as one of Top Attorneys in Washington through “Seattle Met”
  • Repeatedly selected as one of the Top Lawyers in Spokane
  • Repeatedly listed as a Top 100 Lawyer in America
  • Lead counsel in a verdict award recognized as one of the Nation’s Top 100 Verdicts through The National Law Journal that was selected as the top verdict in the country in 2012
  • Record verdicts and settlements in multiple jurisdictions
  • Inducted into the Worldwide Registry for professional excellence and commitment to his clients
  • Faculty member of the Trial Lawyers College where he teaches trial skills to fellow trial lawyers
Personal interests outside of the law:
  • Raising and training quarter horses
  • Hunting, fly fishing, outdoors
  • Rodeo
  • Labradors
  • Travel

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