If you have a situation for which you could earn a settlement, then you obviously want to find the best Cincinnati personal injury lawyer to handle your case. You do not just want the average, random name that comes up in an Internet search. You want to choose carefully.
What distinguishes the top lawyers who focus on personal injury?
What sets them apart? Why should you select one over another?
Here are a few suggested criteria to help with your selection process:
The attorney should have a long history of substantial settlements.
Personal injury lawsuits come in all shapes and sizes. Some law firms aim for high volume and high turnover to make their quota numbers – this is not the kind of firm you want to choose.
If the attorney is talking about the number of suits settled, rather than the amounts of certain settlements, this may be a cause for concern. Settling hundreds of minor traffic incidents for tiny amounts could boost their numbers, but is not significantly helping their clients – or you.
You want to hear about the settlements their clients have received which far surpass the cost of medical bills. You want to hear about substantial settlements. A great Cincinnati personal injury lawyer should be able to produce a lengthy list of satisfied, well-compensated clients.
The attorney should be an expert in the specific type of personal injury law that is relevant for you.
An attorney in another field could, legally, take on a personal injury law case. A divorce attorney could try their hand at personal injury law. This would not be in your best interest.
Even within personal injury law, there are dozens of specialties. If you need “premises liability” — i.e., you injured yourself out at a restaurant due to their negligence in not maintaining the safety of their premises — then you want an attorney with a track record in premises liability.
Think of all the different types of personal injury cases. This is just the tip of the ship:
- Animal bites – dog bites are most common, either on the street, at the dog park, or at the owner’s hous
- Faulty or defective products – whether the product causes injury, inflames an allergy, or leads to a persistent medical condition, a manufacturer can be held responsible even if the product was tested rigorously.
- Food poisoning – an unclean kitchen or dining area could cause a restaurant patron to be poisoned, and an unhygienic situation in a supermarket could cause meat or other foods to be tainted before the point of purchase.
- Pedestrian accidents – automobiles hit people walking on the street every day, and those accidents can lead to considerable settlements for the pedestrians involved.
- School-related injury – whether the conditions on the school property are unsafe, or whether a classmate has injured a student, schools are subject to considerable liability.
- Elder abuse at a facility – sadly, staff members at retirement homes and assisted care facilities are often found to be mistreating or injuring their senior citizen clients, and abusing their positions of power and responsibility.
- Medical malpractice – from defective medical products to bungled procedures, hospitals and medical specialists are frequently subject to lawsuits.
- Plane crashes – not all plane crashes are fatal, and even a difficult landing can cause whiplash.
- Motorcycle accidents – motorcycle riders are injured more often than you may think, and those injuries can be very severe.
- Slander / libel / defamation of character – if such defamation is publicized, the person whose reputation is sullied may lose income, or may lose the ability to find work.
Each type of injury is unique, in terms of what needs to be demonstrated on trial. The best Cincinnati personal injury lawyer for you will have specific, relevant experience in your type of situation.
The attorney should have empathy and compassion.
Not all attorneys demonstrate their genuine concern for those impacted by the injury. If the attorney comes across as crass or unsympathetic, then this attitude may come across in how they represent you. Find a top attorney whose personality is that of someone who makes you feel comfortable regarding your particular situation.
The attorney should also show a genuine interest in your situation. True curiosity and concern are difficult to fake. You will be able to get a sense, from your conversation, that the attorney is listening, engaged, and capable of caring about your needs. You will be able to feel that.
The attorney should not earn any money until you win your case.
This is a big one. Personal injury attorneys should get paid only if you get paid. Personal injury law is generally compensated based on a percentage of the settlement — not at an hourly rate. Be sure to clarify this point up front.