Personal Injury

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Personal Injury Legality

Personal injury legality encompasses a broad range of claims that fall under tort law, which also includes civil wrongs, rights, reputation and property damages. Automobile accidents, product defects, work accidents, industry related disease, assault, medical malpractice and slip-and-falls are the most common types of personal injury claims, which can be either physical and/or psychological. Personal injury damages can be either special or general. Special damages are those with costs that can be measured, such as lost earnings and property damage, while costs from general damages are less quantified, such as psychological and physical suffering.


Personal Injury Lawyers

While the majority of personal injury cases settle out of court, personal injury lawyers are technically classified as trial lawyers, and often referred to as plaintiff lawyers. Practicing personal injury attorneys must hold State bar accreditations and conform to strict standards of legal ethics, which can vary from state to state. In addition to state bar exams, the majority of states impose a Multistate Bar Examination, Multistate Essay Examination and Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination. Ongoing accreditations (varying by State) include Continuing Legal Education (CLE) courses directed at keeping lawyers up-to-date with legalities.


What to Look for in a Personal Injury Lawyer

Personal injury lawyers are bound by strict ethical standards, and as such, should always work in the best interest of their clients. A high degree of knowledge in legal issues, competence and ethics are important traits in a personal injury lawyer. Bar examinations can vary, and the majority of states also require plaintiff lawyers to hold a four-year college degree and law degree from an accredited law school.

Personal injury lawyers often choose to specialize in particular areas of law, thus enabling them to acquire a heightened degree of information. In order to become a personal injury specialist, the completion of a specialty certificate program that has been accredited by the American Bar Association is required. Some states do not recognize specialties, while in other states, the title of “Certified Trial Attorney” can be held.


Personal Injury Attorney Compensation and Fees

Compensation from personal injury settlements are contingent on the severity of damages, which may include lifetime repercussion compensation (loss of amenity).

The majority of personal injury lawyers work on a contingency plan, meaning they are only paid if a settlement is in their clients favor. It is commonly accepted for this fee to equal one-third of the full settlement or ruling.