Who is a personal injury lawyer?
A personal injury attorney is a type of civil litigator who provides legal representation to an individual who has suffered physical or psychological injury as a result of negligence or carelessness of another person, entity, agency or organization. Often this kind of personal injury lawsuits relates to automobile accidents or workplace incidents.
Even though a personal injury attorney is trained and licensed to practice virtually any field of law, he or her generally only handles cases that fall under tort law. Tort law system is designed to put the injured person back into the position he would have been in had he not suffered the injury. This means that if you get injured and suffer medical expenses, pain and suffering, and damages, you can sue the person who caused the injury to recover those damages.
Personal injury lawyer: responsibilities, education, costs and sources
Personal injury attorneys have numerous responsibilities in serving their clients. These responsibilities encompass both professional and ethical rules and codes of conduct established by state bar associations where the attorneys are licensed. Upon being licensed to practice law by their respective state bar associations, lawyers are legally permitted to file legal complaints, argue cases before the jury, draft legal documents, and offer legal advice to personal injury.
A personal injury lawyer interviews prospective clients and evaluates their cases to determine the legal matter, identify the distinct issues embedded within the plaintiff’s larger problem, and extensively research every issue to build a strong case. Ultimately, a personal injury attorney will help you obtain the justice and compensation you deserve for your losses and suffering through oral arguments, advocacy, and legal advice.
Compensation may cover lost wages, medical expenses, and the replacement of the client’s property that was damaged in the accident among other losses. To obtain this compensation, the lawyer will negotiate with insurance firms and any responsible parties on your behalf as the client. He will also ensure that you are not forced to give up any rights during the settlement. If the case cannot be settled, the attorney will represent you during the trial where he will represent his case to the court.
Just like all other attorneys, personal injury attorneys have both an undergraduate degree and a law degree. Although their undergraduate degrees vary dramatically, most of them major in history, English, business, political science, government, and pre-law. Law school is a highly competitive 2-year graduate program.
In many jurisdictions, a personal injury lawyer works on what is commonly known as a contingency fee. This means that a lawyer recovers only if his client wins the case— and he is paid a percentage of the damages the plaintiff recovers. If the lawyer loses at trial or fails to win a settlement, he receives no fee. As the client, however, you will be required to pay for expenses such as court fees, photocopying and postage expense the outcome of your case notwithstanding.
Finding a personal injury lawyer may require that you do some research. Begin by asking family members, friends and even local attorneys which lawyers they recommend. On most occasions, personal injury attorneys offer free consultation services to prospective clients.