For the non-lawyers out there, figuring out the legal system and what kind of lawyer you will need for a specific problem can be a difficult process. Sometimes it seems like you need a lawyer to figure out what kind of lawyer you need! For the purpose of this article, we are going to look at the range of responsibilities and cases that a personal injury lawyer handles, what you can expect a personal injury lawyer to do for you, and where to find one.
A personal injury attorney provides legal representation to those who claim they have suffered either psychological or physical injury from a company, government agency, or other organization, whether intentionally or through negligence. Personal injury attorneys can represent clients who have suffered an injury from almost anyone or any industry, but they frequently limit their practice to civil cases, or "tort law" cases. They generally seek justice and/or financial compensation for their client’s loss and/or suffering. The industries sued are often trucking companies, medical device manufacturers, doctors and companies in risky work environments, such as construction or oil drilling.
Much of this branch of law has to do with negligence cases. In these cases, the plaintiff claims that they were owed a duty of care by a company and that duty was breached by the company (or more accurately, the defendant in this case, whether or not they are a company or a person).
There are many famous examples of this type of case, for example, someone finds something in their food, or someone is served their coffee at too hot a temperature. While these are all examples of personal injury lawsuits, negligence suits do not always have to do with fast food chains but often involve medical malpractice, other types of products, and heavy machinery. Cases involving defective products are often referred to with the term "product liability."
Personal injury attorneys are often called "trial lawyers," but in reality most personal injury cases end in settlement. Sometimes personal injury lawyers take on class action cases, in which you are one person among a number of plaintiffs claiming injury due to a product defect or company/organization/person’s actions or negligence.
If you are seeking representation for an injury case, you should make sure that they are certified and a member of their state’s Bar Association. Bar Associations have referral services that can help you find a personal injury attorney. Lawyers that handle personal injury cases may also be members of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America or Association of Personal Injury Lawyers.
If you or a loved one has suffered an injury, from medical negligence, a defective product, a workplace or commercial trucking accident, or other related field, you may want to contact a personal injury attorney and seek fair compensation, an apology, or some other form of justice. Let them help you determine who is at a fault and what you can expect from a case. Be sure if you think you have a case to preserve evidence and take notes after the incident. If you think you have a case, do not hesitate to contact a lawyer. There is no reason to suffer in silence, especially in a situation in which you are not at fault.