Termite Lawyer Bugged By Job But Likes the Independence
Posted Jul 8, 2008 9:40 AM CST
By Martha Neil
The life of a termite lawyer isn't an easy one, particularly when he is new to the job, Pete Cardillo says.
And the 50-year-old Columbia Law School graduate should know. Perhaps the only attorney in the nation who practices full-time suing pest control companies over allegedly breached contracts to keep termites in check, Cardillo says it's tough not to take the job home with him at night, reports the Palm Beach Post.
"I used to have nightmares about this stuff," says Cardillo, who practices in Tampa, Fla. "I'd dream the subterraneans had infiltrated my house and were chomping away. When I first got into this business, I was just obsessed."
A former big-firm lawyer, Cardillo starting handling termite cases in 1996, eventually garnering the book of business he needed to go out on his own in 2003 and stop feeling like "a widget on a production line." His practice niche makes it relatively easy to catch the attention of prospective clients (his license plate is BUG LAW), and he made headlines last year with a $2 million settlement in a fraud and racketeering case against a pest control company. It was one of many, he contends, that has engaged in unfair consumer practices.
Known as a termite expert in a state that has an above-average amount of infestations, he gets a certain amount of business by word of mouth, too, he tells the newspaper. "People tend to have a lot of questions about termites. This is why my wife doesn't like to stand next to me at parties."