Injured in a car or motorcycle accident? How do you know which lawyer is right for your case?
From Delaware Water Gap to Mount Pocono and down Route 33 to Easton, you’ll probably see 2 dozen billboards advertising lawyers who fight for you. The lawyers typically have their arms crossed with stern looks on their faces or feature angry animals, guaranteeing maximum compensation. The teeth on this billboard are pretty scary but I’m not sure the lawyer who shows his teeth at a judge would be very convincing.
These ads must work because they are fairly common nationally. Some of these lawyers may actually be decent attorneys but I think the ads demean the profession. But how do you know who is good? Anyone can say they fight for you and are the “gorilla” that will let you retire in Boca.
Here are a few suggestions on picking a lawyer.
When lawyers need to refer a client’s case to another jurisdiction and they don’t know anyone to give them a recommendation, they’ll typically use martindale.com. This is a service where lawyers are rated by their colleagues and judges on both their ethics and their knowledge of the law. The best ones have an AV-rating as do their firms. You can search nationwide for lawyers in the jurisdiction where your accident happened.
You don’t want the Gorilla Lawyer
Second, let’s get away from the concept that the most obnoxious lawyer gets good results. Let me share a secret with you. Obnoxious lawyers don’t do well in front of the typical jury. The best trial lawyers are those who can convince a jury of the value of their client’s case. Those are not the aggressive, obnoxious lawyers. Those are the lawyers who can tell a story to the jury that resonates with the average person. It’s the lawyer who has the respect of the judge. That’s not the gorilla lawyer. It’s the nice competent lawyer who is able to convince people how much your injuries have changed your life.
Did you know that 95% of personal injury cases settle? The best lawyers are those who can develop a rapport with opposing counsel and the defendant’s insurance company to persuade them as to the value of a case. Drawing a line in the sand too often means a lesser result, a longer time to resolve a case, and much greater expense.
Call a Local Lawyer for a Recommendation
Know a divorce or estate lawyer in the County where you were injured? They may not handle personal injury cases but they may often be in a position to make a recommendation for you. If you know a lawyer who doesn’t practice personal injury law, ask them for a recommendation. I don’t know any local lawyers who would turn you away.
There are lots of great lawyers out there. Many may be fine and do a good job for you. What is often not said is that injured people are not just “plaintiffs.” You’ll need support in getting your medical bills paid, on getting a new car, in dealing with your employer and recovering your lost wages.
This will probably be the most stressful experience of your life. Making decisions and recovering from traumatic injuries is horrible.
For the caring lawyer, it’s not just about the contingent fee.Until your case is resolved, it will be difficult to move on. Dealing with the insurance and the bills and the replacement car is all part of the service a good law firm provides.
If you would like to discuss your options and want to “vet” us, that makes sense to us and we’d be happy to speak with you. If we can’t help you or you’d like a recommendation elsewhere, we’re happy to provide that.
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