Lawyers are everywhere. One look in the phonebook or a simple click of the mouse will confirm that statement. But as the old saying goes: it is all about quality, not quantity. That saying rings especially true when the time comes for you, as someone who has experienced serious personal injuries caused by someone else’s negligence, to determine what personal injury lawyer out of the massive quantity of lawyers is the best one to handle and represent your interests. After all, while there may be a multitude of lawyers, there is only one of you, and the unique facts, circumstances and injuries involved in your case deserve to be handled by personal injury attorneys who possess the resources, skill and experience required to achieve the best possible results on your claim. This is why quality will always trump quantity.
Below, you will find a few tips that are helpful in searching for and determining the best personal injury lawyer to suit your needs. This is by no means an exclusive list of things to consider, but it provides a prospective personal injury client with a good place to start in the process of weeding through the quantity to locate the quality.
(1) You should aim for a law firm that dedicates most, if not all, of its practice to plaintiff’s work. Personal injury is a large area of law, and you will want to select an attorney who is experienced in fighting for the interests of people who have been in situations similar to the one you are facing.
(2) It is a good idea to do as much research as you can on lawyers in your area that specialize in the type of personal injury you are faced with. The internet provides the quickest and most useful way to research different attorneys and law firms. You can use a search engine to pinpoint your search to your specific injuries or situation. Google is an excellent tool for this. Compile a short list of lawyers you have interest in, and then research that short list to compare and contrast the experience and accomplishments of each.
(3) Law firm websites can be intimidating. There is a LOT of information, and most of it may not apply to you. To make the best use of your time, go straight to the section of the site that details cases the firm has handled and results that have been obtained in the area of your injury. Compare and contrast that information between your list of personal injury lawyers. The amount of cases handled by a firm in a certain area is a great indicator of the experience and qualifications the firm has to handle similar cases. For example, if your injury stems from a semi-truck accident, and a particular firm you have researched has handled several trucking cases and obtained million-dollar results, that firm would likely be a good fit for you, and you should consider contacting that law firm to discuss your case.
(4) If you have found one or two law firms that look like they might be a good fit for your needs, get into contact with them. Often times, you can contact a law firm right through their website by filling out an information sheet or sending them an email. However, the best and most direct way to contact an attorney or law firm you are interested in is to pick up the phone and call the law office. Many times, the attorney will have a toll-free number for you to use, which allows you to call and speak with a representative of the office and fully explain the facts of your case at no cost to you. Additionally, you can ask the representative to send you any printed information or materials by mail, so that you will have documentation of the attorney or law firm’s qualifications and areas of expertise that you can share with others who may be affected by or interested in your decision to choose a lawyer.
(5) Remember, an attorney might not always be able to speak with you directly the first time you call, and this should not discourage you. In the best personal injury law firms, the entire office works together as a team to gather information and communicate that information in the most effective way for the client and the firm. However, once you have given the facts and information of your case to the firm’s representative, you should be able to expect that it will be communicated to an attorney who is best equipped to handle your claim. You are entitled to speak with that attorney who will be able to tell you if his or her law firm is the best place for your claim.
(6) Experienced personal injury attorneys know which cases they are equipped to handle and which cases would be better handled in the hands of another firm. If the attorney you call cannot accept your case, ask if he or she can point you in the direction of another law firm or attorney that might be able to.
(7) It is also important to remember to get a second opinion. Simply because one personal injury law firm or attorney declines to accept your case or informs you that you do not have a case does not mean that other firms or attorneys will feel the same. Again, this underscores the importance of selecting an experienced, qualified personal injury attorney to consult with. If you are told by one law firm that you will not be successful with your case, you should go back to the list you made, and call another law firm you researched. While it could be true that you may not have a case that can be resolved successfully, you are entitled to speak to different attorneys who may have different views on the complexity or likelihood of success of your claim.
(8) When you call any attorney or law firm, you are entitled to be treated with politeness and respect; if you are treated in any other way, that is not the law firm where either you or your case belongs.
(9) If you contact an attorney and an appointment is made to meet and discuss you case in person, be sure to write down or create a memo of any and all questions you have about your case. The time set up for this appointment is a time dedicated for you and the attorney to discuss all aspects of your case, and you will want to be able to walk away from the meeting feeling informed. Additionally, try to relay all of the facts surrounding your injury, even if there is something you would prefer to keep personal or you do not feel comfortable sharing. Remember, throughout the course of your lawsuit, all of the facts and circumstances of your injuries will be examined, and it is better for all parties to know the full score up front than to discover things later in the game.
Personal injury attorneys are a special breed of attorneys because they must possess the sincerity, compassion and skill required to work daily with clients who have experienced severe pain and the worst kinds of loss. Entrusting your case in the hands of a qualified personal injury attorney should be a part of your healing process. You should feel confident that you have chosen a firm that you can trust will meet your needs and do everything possible to bring your case to a successful conclusion. There is a large quantity of personal injury law firms out there, but to achieve the best possible outcome for a case based on your very personal pain, suffering and injuries, you should never settle for anything less than quality.