Sometimes, it seems that there are more lawyers in Cobb County than stars in the sky. A few of these attorneys are unscrupulous lawyers who are neither competent nor trustworthy. But all attorneys attended reputable law schools and passed the bar examination. So, they all have some solid qualifications.
But if you were seriously injured in a vehicle collision, not just any lawyer will do. You need an aggressive advocate who can stand up for your right sin court. You also need a skilled counselor who can give you solid legal advice.
These individuals are not easy to find. Many sources, such as online reviews and awards won, are not always trustworthy. For the most part, anyone can say anything on the internet. And, many attorney awards are like those “Who’s Who” listings in high school. If you buy the book, the publisher puts your name in the book.
The most important element is also one of the most complex ones. So, we will spend some additional time here.
As mentioned, all lawyers have some general competency, but not all of them should handle a personal injury claim. Children should go to pediatric dentists and adults who need implants should go to prosthodontists. Similarly, if you have a personal injury claim, you should go to a personal injury lawyer. On TV, Perry Mason did wills, criminal defense, divorce, and everything in between. But the real world is not like that.
The late Grant Cooper, who represented convicted Robert Kennedy assassin Sirhan Sirhan in 1968, is a good example. On paper, Cooper was well-qualified to handle a death penalty case. In the early 60s, Cooper was president of the American College of Trial Lawyers.
But for most of his career, Cooper was a celebrity lawyer. For example, he was Shirley Temple’s divorce attorney when she split from John Wayne sidekick and B-movie stalwart John Agar.
So, he did not aggressively challenge the state’s evidence in the Sirhan prosecution. There were some holes in the case against Sirhan. Perhaps they were not big enough to change the outcome, but they may have been sufficient to reduce his sentence. Currently, Sirhan Sirhan is still incarcerated.
Apropos of nothing, the latest Kennedy conspiracy theory, which surfaced in the early 2000s, holds that Cooper intentionally threw the case for mysterious reasons. But who knows.
Also, years of experience may be deceptive. Many personal injury attorneys handle countless cases, yet they never do any trial work. Most cases settle out of court. Insurance companies know which lawyers are aggressive in court and which ones hide in “plea closets.” If your lawyer’s experience does not include at least a few jury trials, it may be best to keep looking.
Experience and dedication are closely linked. As mentioned, if your son needs a checkup, you probably should not take him to a guy who fits old people with dentures. Your personal injury claim is too important to leave to someone whose experience is suspect.
However, whereas inexperience is always a bad thing, diversity is not always a bad thing. If an attorney practices other kinds of law, especially criminal defense, s/he may have additional skills and insight that other attorneys do not have.
Additionally, lawyers who handle wills and trusts often have very good bedside manners. They are used to explaining complex legal principles in ways regular people can understand.
This item is quite important for injury victims. Because of their physical injuries, these individuals often have a hard time getting around. If the lawyer’s office is on the other side of town, that trip could get old. Most attorneys are willing to meet clients at other places, like their homes or hospitals. But these environments are simply not the same.
There may be some overlap here as well. If your attorney is dedicated to personal injury law, s/he will understand if you have a bad day and need to cancel or move an appointment. Other lawyers may not be so compassionate.
If the attorney is close by, that encourages frequent visits. So, your lawyer becomes more like a partner. Typically, these kinds of relationships have the happiest endings, in terms of fair compensation for injuries.
If you try a different restaurant and there are no cars in the parking lot at dinnertime, that may be a bad sign. There is probably a reason for the lack of customers. Conversely, if you try a different restaurant and the hostess says there is an hour wait for a table, that may be a bad sign. No one’s chicken fried steak is that good.
The same is true of a personal injury lawyer. An attorney should be accessible when you have a question, but not idly surfing the internet in the middle of the afternoon.
An email response test usually works. When you go to the lawyer’s “contact us” webpage and send a message, wait for a reply. If a personal response is in your inbox in ten minutes, the layer probably has few clients. If you only get an impersonal “your claim is important to us” response, the lawyer may be too busy to give your case the attention it deserves.
This final element combines many of the other ones. They say that sculptors can see statutes in marble slabs. Your personal injury attorney should have a clear vision for the case, and we are not just talking about getting money.
Of course, financial compensation is important. But so are things like closure and justice. Your attorney should have a vision for how a claim will change your life for the better, and not just how it will increase a bank account balance.
Reach Out to an Aggressive Lawyer
Selecting a personal injury attorney takes time. For a free consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney in Marietta, contact The Phillips Law Firm, LLC. We do not charge upfront legal fees in injury claims.