What Qualifications Should An Injury Lawyer Have?
To be a personal injury lawyer, one has to understand the law and keep up to date with it, because the industry is moving fast. The subjects involved with personal injury vary. They range from minor road traffic accidents to national newsworthy disasters, such as the horrific crash on The Smiler rollercoaster at Alton Towers in 2015.
There are two important aspects of an injury lawyer: qualification and experience. Here is everything you need to know about these, to help you choose the right lawyer for you:
Injury lawyer qualifications
When looking for a personal injury lawyer to represent you, it’s important to check that they are qualified to do so. Working within the legal industry is no guarantee of qualification, and holding a law degree does not guarantee that person is qualified to call themselves a lawyer.
To check that a lawyer is qualified, ask to see their practicing certificate. By law, solicitors must hold a practicing certificate. The practicing certificate is governed by SRA Practice Framework Rules 2011 and by the Solicitors Act 1974 as amended. You can check a practicing certificate’s authenticity by contacting the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), who also run a free service called ‘Find a Solicitor’ in conjunction with The Law Society.
You can also ask the law firm you are in discussions with whether or not they have received any awards in recognition of their service. While awards offer no guarantee of a lawyer being qualified, they can give a good indication about service quality and client satisfaction.
Injury lawyer experience
There are so many areas of personal injury law that there are no two identical lawyers. Each personal injury lawyer will have their own specialisms. Ideally, you want to have a personal injury lawyer on your side who can quantify, evidence and assess your case, based on the experience of successfully handling similar cases to your own before.
For example, you will be assigned a lawyer who is experienced with handling cases similar to your own. Any law firm that does this has their wits about them, because they are effectively increasing the chances of claim success.
In terms of experience, the number of years a lawyer has practised doesn’t really matter in the grand scheme of things. Yes, chances are they will have worked a wide range of cases, however you should really be judging a lawyer on their case experience. That is, by the number of cases similar to your own that they have won. So do ask your lawyer if they have worked any cases similar to yours, and don’t be afraid to ask them about their success rate.