When you are evaluating possible attorneys to hire for your personal injury claim, you might be wondering how important it is that the attorney has trial experience. There are a lot of lawyers and firms out there that never take their cases to trial or only have minimal experience in the courtroom. So, how might it impact your case if you retain a lawyer or firm that never litigates?
The first thing to point out is that very few personal injury cases ever see the inside of a courtroom. In fact, statistically, approximately 95% of such cases are settled during the pretrial phase. The main reason that most cases settle is because avoiding a trial is generally in everyone’s best interests.
Litigation is costly, time-consuming, and unpredictable. For a personal injury plaintiff, going to trial could mean a much higher damage award, or it could mean walking away with very little or nothing. The defendant (usually an insurance company) is also rolling the dice when a case goes to trial, and if they lose, it could end up costing them a lot more in damages and legal fees.
All of that said, you should still look for a lawyer who not only has trial experience, but also someone who has a successful track record in cases that they have litigated. Here are some of the reasons why your personal injury attorney should have trial experience:
Trial Preparation Creates a Stronger Case
If your lawyer has a good amount of trial experience, they will approach the case much differently than an attorney or firm that never goes to trial. The one with litigation experience will begin preparing for that possibility as soon as they take the case. This means conducting a full investigation to gather all of the important facts and evidence to show that the defendant is liable, and it might also mean calling on various experts whose testimony can lend additional credence to your claim.
A firm that does not litigate cases will not put in as much effort to build a strong claim. A good example of this is the firms that put up the billboards all over town. These firms are commonly known as “settlement mills” because their whole business model is based on bringing in a high number of cases and churning them out as quickly as possible. This is how they continue to pay for all that expensive advertising.
A Proven Trial Attorney Has Much More Negotiating Leverage
This is a very important point to emphasize – if your attorney has ample trial experience, this puts them in a much better position to negotiate a good settlement for their clients. Insurance companies know the attorneys and law firms in each area, and they know the ones that have been known to take a case to trial and the ones that always settle. Which one would you rather have in your corner?
Clearly, you would want the lawyer who is willing to go to trial, because this alone is often enough to bring the other side to the negotiating table. If, on the other hand, you decide to go with an attorney or firm that the insurance company knows will never go to trial, what incentive does the insurer have to make you a reasonable offer?
There is Still a Chance that you Might Have to Litigate
Although the chances of going to trial are pretty slim statistically, there are still some cases in which it makes sense to litigate. There are times when insurance companies utterly refuse to negotiate in good faith, and although it is more time-consuming, filing a lawsuit might be the best move in a case like this. If your case ever gets to this point, you will definitely want a lawyer who has trial experience.
Contact M. Adam Jones and Associates for Help with Your Alabama Personal Injury
Retaining a lawyer with trial experience is very important when you have an injury claim. And because almost all personal injury lawyers work on a contingency fee basis, you will not have to pay upfront attorney fees regardless of who you hire. This being the case, why not retain the best attorney you can find?
For personal injury claims in Alabama, M. Adam Jones and Associates is ready to go to work for you! We have the proven litigation experience you are looking for, and we have the knowledge, skills, resources, and commitment to help ensure that you recover the full and fair compensation you deserve. Contact us today to set up a free consultation and case evaluation.
M. Adam Jones & Associates, LLC
206 N. Lena St.
Dothan, AL 36303