If you’ve been hurt in an accident, a skilled injury lawyer can help. They can navigate the complex legal procedures, medical and insurance jargon and sift through the mountains of paperwork that are required to file a claim. They should have the compassion to understand your physical, emotional and financial losses and a deep understanding of what it takes to successfully resolve your case.
Injury lawyers examine police reports, interview witnesses, review medical records, and conduct other investigations to establish negligence in your case. They may also seek the advice of experts in accident reconstruction, medical and safety matters to support your case.
Whether you were injured in a car crash, at work or at home due to a defective product, an injury lawyer will make sure that all the relevant evidence is preserved. They will ask you to keep the damaged items, so that they can take non-destructive tests, if necessary, to determine if the item is defective. They will also make sure that all the medical and financial records related to your injuries are collected and preserved.
Once a liability analysis is complete, your injury attorney will review statutes, case law and other relevant legal precedents to determine who is responsible for your losses. For example, if you are injured by a doctor who performs surgery at a clinic that employs the doctor, it is possible to hold the clinic liable under a legal doctrine called vicarious liability.
When the defendants in your case are contacted, your injury lawyer will prepare to negotiate a fair settlement. They will consider the value of your claim and the amount of damages you’ve suffered, including general, special and punitive. They will also factor in the impact your injuries have had on your life and your future.
If the case is not settled, your lawyer will prepare for trial. This may involve retaining expert witnesses, if needed, and conducting depositions. The defendants will be given a chance to respond to any claims that you’ve made and to present their own counterclaims. If the case goes to trial, it will be heard in front of a judge and jury.
A good injury lawyer will have extensive experience representing injured people and a track record of success. They should be a member of one or more national and/or state organizations of attorneys who specialize in representing injury victims. These groups often sponsor legal education seminars and write articles on personal injury law issues. They also provide lobbying services for legislation that benefits injury victims. It’s important that you find out how many years your injury lawyer has been in practice and how many personal injury jury trials they have tried. A newer injury lawyer who hasn’t yet proven his or her worth in the courtroom could be a gamble that you’re not willing to take.