May 2 2011

How to Choose a Personal Injury Lawyer

Choosing a personal injury lawyer is often a critical decision that comes at a difficult time. After one has been injured in an accident, the natural reaction is to focus on healing and not put much thought into other choices. Unfortunately, one’s attorney selection can often make the difference between recovering financially and allowing the physical injury to be only a fraction of the impact on one’s life. The critical factors to consider are an attorney’s experience, integrity, and ability to relate and communicate with his or her clients. While the last factor may seem less important, it can be critical.

The Real Meaning of Experience

While it is easy to assume that a lawyer’s experience is simply measured by the number of years that he or she has been in practice, there is more to it. When dealing with personal injuries, it is important to determine how many years an attorney has been exposed to the specific injury that you have suffered. This means not only what part of your body has been affected, but the context in which you were injured. For example, a brain injury will have very specific medical evidence that a lawyer should be familiar with. Likewise, if you were injured in an industrial accident, this will have different specifics from an injury involving a commercial trucking company. In each instance, it important to find a lawyer that has experience that as closely as possible mirror your circumstances because then he or she will be familiar with the potential pitfalls and advantages. While this is not always possible, it is a prudent target.

Integrity and Personality

After being injured, it natural to be angry, and, in some cases, to think about revenge rather than fairness. One of a good lawyer’s traits will to be keep the client focused on justice. Those that even discuss retribution are more likely to be willing to bend the rules. This may seem appealing, but if unsuccessful, such a lawyer’s conduct may bar the client from recovering at all. It is important to seek a fair outcome that maximizes the benefit to the client, rather than going for revenge.

In addition to integrity, it is important that a client feel comfortable communicating with his or her lawyer. This will help ensure that details do not get missed, and that if the client must testify, the story evokes the true sense of the case most thoroughly. While this may seem either unimportant or obvious, it is often overlooked, and can be of critical importance.

For more information regarding personal injury claims contact – Connecticut Personal Injury Lawyer

Disclaimer: Nothing in the above should be construed as legal advice or should be relied on in lieu of seeking the advice of a licensed attorney. The author and publisher of the above information assumes no liability for anything contained in the above article.


Oct 28 2009

Premises Liability and Types of Visitors

Premises liability refers to holding the owner responsible for accidents and injuries that occur on their premises. Some states focus on the type of visitor-owner relationship for determining owner responsibility for injuries that occur on their property.

Invitee

An invitee is someone who was invited onto the property for the commercial benefit of the premises owner; for example, a customer in a store. In this case the property owner has a duty to protect invitees from harm and to warn of any potentially dangerous situations on their premises.

The property owner is responsible when:

  • The risk to invitees is unreasonable
  • The owner knows, or reasonably should have known, about the condition

A property owner may be required to inspect the premises regularly to ensure that a dangerous situation hasn’t been created, such as when something has been spilled on the floor that creates the danger of a slip and fall.

Social Guests or Licensees

A licensee is a person invited onto the premises for a reason that is not commercial. The property owner in this case is responsible for any injuries on their property when:

  • The owner knows, or reasonably should have known, about the condition
  • The owner did not try to make the condition safe
  • The owner did not warn the licensee of the risk created by the condition
  • The licensee did not know, or have reason to know, the condition existed

Trespasser

A trespasser is someone who enters the premises without an invitation. It is possible for the owner of the property to give notice of the possibility of injury when the owner knows it is likely that trespassers will enter the premises. This requirement applies to conditions that the owner knows to be likely to cause serious injury or death, and when the condition isn’t obvious.

Children

When the owner knows that uninvited children are likely to be on the premises, the owner must give notice of dangerous conditions that are likely to cause serious injury or death. If there is a condition on the property that is dangerous, and artificial (not natural), but likely to attract children, the homeowner has a duty to eliminate the danger or otherwise reasonably protect the child. Examples of artificial conditions that are attractive to children are:

  • Vehicles
  • Trampolines
  • Swimming Pools

In determining responsibility of the owner of the premises, some states take the reason the guest is on the property into consideration. Invitees who are on the property for the commercial gain of the owner are afforded the most protection against slip and fall injuries, while trespassers are afforded the least.

This article is for informational purposes and does not constitute legal advice. Please contact an attorney in your local area for more information about premises liability law.

Additional Legal Pages: For more information about premise liabilities please visit Searcy Denney Scarola Barnhart & Shipley PA.