The Importance of Working with an Attorney for Your PI Case

  • For most legal cases, there is no law that an individual must have an attorney. An individual may file suits, defend himself, take depositions and anything else attorneys may do in a case. However, in most cases, this is not just a bad idea -- it's a sure way to keep from getting the best results. As proof, even seasoned attorneys opt for representation when it comes to their own cases.

     

    Objectivity

     

    It just makes sense, on a variety of levels, to get representation. The first and most obvious reason is that plaintiffs are often emotionally invested in the case, clouding their judgment. A third party may see more objectively and catch things you may have missed.

     

    In no cases is this more true than with personal injury claims. There are essentially two types of suits: criminal and civil. Criminal cases take place when a law has been broken, and the government itself pursues justice according to federal, state and local laws. Personal injury lawsuits fall under the category of civil cases. In these, the injured party attempts to receive compensation for action or inaction by a defendant that the plaintiff claims has resulted in injury or harm. To do so effectively, an attorney is indispensable in most cases.

     

    Experience Counts

     

    Individuals filing their own claims usually do not know the standards and practices, the ins and outs, of court proceedings. They must research what and when to file, look up the proper technique, language and forms, and know what damages they should seek and to what they may be entitled. For example, an inexperienced individual may understand that they are be entitled to compensation for medical expenses and property damage, but they may not realize that they could be entitled to punitive damages as well.

     

    And while television shows and movies love to depict the emotional court scene when an attorney breaks a corrupt witness, the reality of the law is often much different. A large amount of time is spent simply on paperwork. A wrong filing or an incorrect bit of information can be catastrophic for a case. Preparing the required documents often takes a great deal of time, even for someone with experience. An attorney who has been filing lawsuits for years helps streamline the process, making sure that everything is filed correctly and on time in order to move the claim along at a reasonable pace.

     

    Overwhelming

     

    Another hurdle for the average person to overcome is understanding how the court system actually works. More often than not, in personal injury cases, insurance companies handle the defense and are manned by teams of attorneys who have years of experience specifically in personal injury suits. If there are multiple defendants (for example, in a car accident case where the driver was speeding and the design of the vehicle was also at fault), it is possible for even a seasoned attorney to feel overwhelmed.

     

    In these cases it helps to have firms that have been there before. They know the tactics commonly used by insurance companies and other attorneys and how best to combat them. They know what to ask for and, almost as importantly, the terms of payment most beneficial to their client. In most cases, they have colleagues and staff to help with the research and preparation these cases often require.

     

    Worth the Phone Call

     

    An experienced attorney can do more than simply help file a case. He or she will make a point of showing you your options and explaining different courses of action which could produce the results you desire. More importantly, a credible personal injury attorney gets paid only when you do.