Personal injury is a legal term that refers to specific injuries and illnesses that are not self-inflicted but rather incurred in events beyond the sufferer’s control. It does not refer to damages to property but rather harm inflicted on a person’s body, mind, or emotions.
Personal injuries can stem from incidences like:
- vehicle or roadway accidents
- on-the-job accidents
- trips and falls
- defective products
- medical negligence
- exposure to chemicals, smoke, noise, and other toxins
Physical injuries can range from bone fractures, sprains, and dislocations to loss of senses like hearing or sight. Illnesses that fall under the personal injury legal category include:
- lung cancer
People who suffer these types of injuries and illnesses may be able to retain a personal injury lawyer to help them seek compensation and justice in court. An injury lawyer typically practices tort law and may be a member of a personal injury law firm. The injury lawyer can also be an independent accident attorney who represents clients in a wide variety of personal injury claims.
Depending on the nature and severity of your injury, you may want to hire an injury lawyer to help you build a case to file against the party responsible for your suffering. The decision of whether or not to hire a personal injury attorney can also depend on the state in which you live.
Personal injury laws vary from state to state. When you retain a professional and licensed injury attorney in your state, you get legal counsel who knows what these laws are and how they can pertain to your particular case. You can then decide what kind of argument to build and how much to seek in compensation and damages.
Your injury attorney will have resources on hand like a personal injury calculator to refer to throughout the case. With the help of your accident attorney, you may reach the legal outcome you need to heal from your illness or injury and be able to move on with your life.
What is a Personal Injury Lawyer?
Before you hire a personal injury lawyer to represent you, you may want to know more about this type of legal counsel. A personal injury attorney is a lawyer who specializes in tort law and may concentrate his or her entire practice to taking on and representing personal injury claims.
Every state requires that a personal injury lawyer attend and graduate from an accredited law school as well as pass the state bar exam to be licensed in the state or states in which he or she intends to practice law. Some states also require that these attorneys acquire additional credentials to practice tort or personal injury law or to join a personal injury law firm.
A personal injury lawyer is also held to the highest level of professional and ethical standards and expected to carry out the numerous responsibilities that come with this career. These attorneys have the obligation to:
- interview clients before agreeing to take on a personal injury case
- research how best to resolve the case through available legal means or by using a personal injury calculator
- obtain compensation for losses and damages due to personal injuries
- take the case to trial if a settlement cannot be reached through mediation or arbitration
- exercise good judgment when representing clients
- observe strict confidentiality standards
- exhibit loyalty to clients throughout the proceedings
Finding a reputable, skilled, and assertive personal injury lawyer to take your case does not have to be a complex undertaking. You can find the best counsel for your personal injury matter by using common sense search tips and by knowing what questions to ask a lawyer during your initial consultation with him or her.
Searching for and Selecting the Best Personal Injury Attorney
You do not need to be well-versed in your state’s personal injury laws or even have retained a lawyer in the past to find an attorney who is ready and capable of taking your case today. In fact, you may have the best referral sources at your disposal with your friends and relatives.
Personal injury accidents are unfortunately commonplace in society today. Dozens of people each day suffer injuries or illnesses after tripping and falling in public, being exposed to chemicals like ammonia or bleach, or becoming involved in other circumstances that lead to personal injuries.
Your own family members and friends may have used the services of a local personal injury lawyer in the past. If so, you can ask this person for the attorney’s name and contact information and set up a first meeting with him or her.
Likewise, you may get valuable insight on which attorneys to interview and which ones to avoid by browsing online attorney review websites. These sites permit people to post reviews of their experiences with personal injury attorneys. You can use these details to determine what attorneys you want to look into further and what ones you should avoid entirely.
Once you know what attorneys you want to meet with, you should set up the initial consultations and head into those meetings with a list of questions at the ready. These questions can help you determine the lawyer’s readiness to assist you with the case. The answers may also influence your own gut instinct about how much you can trust the attorney with your legal matter.
Some of the best questions to ask during these initial meetings include:
- How long have you practiced personal injury law?
- How much work on my case will you do personally and how much will be done by your assistants?
- How will you communicate with me during the case?
- What is your win record for cases like mine?
You also want to find out how much the lawyer charges per hour. Some personal injury attorneys only charge retainer fees and do not collect on hourly fees unless you win your case.
Reasons to Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer
After you suffer an injury or illness in an accident, you may wonder if you really need to hire a personal injury lawyer to help you. You might ask yourself if you can just represent yourself or file a claim with the other party’s insurer without having to pay for an attorney first.
It is true that you can represent yourself in these kinds of cases. However, when you have suffered significant losses because your personal injury, you may not want to risk the outcome of your case on your own lack of experience.
When you retain a personal injury lawyer, you get skilled representation that will be devoted to you and your best interests in and out of court. You also get protection from consequences of your personal injury, such as reprisal from the responsible party or the wrongful loss of employment and income.
Your personal injury lawyer knows how to apply the laws in your state to your particular case and also can research and implement the best strategy to win you a fair settlement. You will get the compensation you need now to help you recover from your injuries or illness as well as damages that could take care of you and your family for years in the future.
A personal injury lawyer can be a valuable ally in your efforts to recoup losses and compensation for your injuries or illness. When you suffer an injury or become sick because of circumstances beyond your control, you may have the right to pursue a case in court.
These attorneys are available to help clients who have gotten hurt on the job, tripped and fallen in public, suffered exposure to chemicals or loud noises, or otherwise have been injured or made ill in some type of accident. Your condition may prevent you from being able to work and earn money with which to support your family. Your attorney can file a case and pursue damages for lost income as well as other compensation to which you might be legally entitled.
Attorneys who practice this specialty are also called tort lawyers and may be a member of a larger law firm or a sole practitioner. They know the laws in your state and how these laws should be applied to your case. Many of them only charge retainer fees and do not collect on their fees unless you win some type of settlement.
These lawyers are easy to find and readily advertise their services to the public. Even so, you may want to research those who practice in your city and state before putting one on retainer.
Your friends and family members can be valuable sources of information when you are looking for an attorney to hire. You also may be able to find the best attorney to take your case by looking online and considering the reviews of clients who have used these legal services in the past.