How to Choose a Personal Injury Attorney

If you have decided to hire a personal injury attorney, it can be difficult to choose the right lawyer for your case. There are so many lawyers in America, even in small towns, that there are likely to be multiple attorneys willing to represent you. And especially in personal injury cases, they tend to advertise aggressively. Most of the stereotypical lawyer ads on late night TV are commercials for personal injury attorneys, and they are often associated with sleazy marketing tactics.

Finding the right personal injury lawyer can be a challenge in this type of environment. So where can you go to find an ethical, hard-working legal professional?  The best way to find a lawyer for any type of case is a personal recommendation from a trusted friend or family member.  If you know someone who has been involved in a court case similar to the one you are in, ask them about the attorney they hired. If they had a good experience (and especially if they won their case) their lawyer is a good place to start. If you don’t know anyone who has hired a lawyer for a case like yours, call your local bar association for a referral. Bar associations keep a rotating list of well-regarded local lawyers to refer for situations like this.

Other factors to consider: a good personal injury lawyer will take most cases on contingency, which means they don’t get paid unless they win. This helps align your incentives with theirs, and keep them focused on your case. And finally, make sure they have a good website. A personal injury lawyer without a website is a thing of the past, and the better attorneys keep up with modern technology.

Great blog by a New York Personal Injury Attorney

Skull with stethoscope sitting on book

Recently I came across a great blog by a personal injury attorney in New York City, Eric Turkewitz.  Mr. Turkewitz has been practicing personal injury law for nearly 30 years, spending most of that time building up his own firm.  He specializes in medical malpractice law, and has won several multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements for his clients after they have been injured (in some horrific and gruesome ways) by the incompetence or negligence of doctors and nurses.  He has deep insight into how personal injury law works from both sides of the negotiating table.  His writing has enlightened me into just how bad some doctors are – I’d never have guessed someone who could make it through all the schooling and training a doctor has would be so careless!

While personal injury lawyers tend to get a bad name from the so-called “ambulance chasers” you see in sleazy late-night TV commercials and on bus stop bench ads, many of them are upstanding professionals, like Mr. Turkewitz.  He calls out lawyers who use shady or unethical marketing tactics, like directly soliciting victims of airline crashes and other well-known accidents to sue for damages, or leaving spam comments on his blog in an attempt to boost their rankings in Google searches.  And of course there wouldn’t be such a need for personal injury attorneys if insurance companies acted more honorably and didn’t hire doctors just to turn down as many claims as possible to save money.  For example, he recently wrote about a doctor who claimed six completely different signatures were his – this is a blatant case of what appears to be forgery by the doctor’s staff, apparently with his blessing and permission.

So if you want to read more about personal injury law from the perspective of an experienced practitioner, I highly recommend the New York Personal Injury Attorney blog – it is worth your while.