Virginia Personal Injury Lawyer Explains What Legal Ratings Mean
I've been doing personal injury law for well over two decades. I've seen it all in that time. I’ve encountered excellent trial lawyers with lots of experience who know what they're doing, and lawyers who try to do personal injury cases but lack the necessary knowledge and skills to do the best possible job for their clients.
It's scary because there is a real difference between the best of personal injury attorneys and the least strong. So how is a consumer to know how to pick the right personal injury attorney for them?
Obviously, you've been hurt in a car, truck and motorcycle accident and your case is super important to you. Every case in that sense is "serious" because it happened to you and greatly affected your life, health, and happiness.
The first thing to do is to find an attorney who has shown real commitment to this area of practice. Not all personal injury attorneys do nothing but automobile accident law. Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers is that kind of firm because we are devoted to doing little else but car accidents and we only work on personal injury and wrongful death cases.
Our focus makes us specialized. Given that we handle cases for people hurt in accidents every day against the insurance companies we have a lot of experience in that area. You want to have a firm like that and an attorney with a good level of experience and a confidence that comes with that.
One way to gauge whether a given attorney who you're looking at has the necessary experience, skills and reputation to handle your case properly is to look to some of the reputation services that evaluate attorneys.
Martindale, Avvo and Superlawyers are Top Legal Ratings Systems
No one system is the be all and end all among Avvo, Martindale-Hubbell and Super Lawyers. But when you see a firm and an individual lawyer who has the highest ratings on all three of those systems then you know that the chances are pretty high that at least somebody else thinks that that lawyer knows what he or she is doing.
There's a lot more information available to the consumer today because of the internet than there used to be. When I first started practicing the only way to look up somebody's reputation was to pull out the paper books of Martindale-Hubbell and look up by state and by name the individual attorney. Whole rows of libraries at that time were filled up with these giant volumes of lawyers in Martindale-Hubbell. Now through Martindale-Hubbell online as well as its consumer correlate lawyers.com anyone can look up any lawyer and see important information about them.
On the Martindale-Hubbell system what you're looking for is an attorney who's rated AV. The A stands for the highest level of legal ability in which they use the term "preeminent". The V stands for the highest level of ethics. You can't be rated an A unless you also have the V.
On Avvo the highest level is a 9.0 to 10.0. Lawyers in this level on their numerical system are rated as "superb". Finally, the Super Lawyers system has a blue-ribbon panel that evaluate attorneys and inclusion as an attorney among the Virginia Super Lawyers signifies a level of reputation and achievement that is recognized as being among the top 5 percent of lawyers in the state.
There really isn't any way to buy your way into these marks on the lawyer-reputation services. It's not just something that you pay for to become an AV attorney, a superb Avvo attorney or a super lawyer. Rather you have to earn it through achievement in results, reputation, and influence in the legal community through things like teaching and serving on various bar committees.
I am proud personally to be well regarded in all three of these systems as is my law partner Jim Hurley. I hope that if you're considering a personal injury attorney anywhere in Virginia but particularly in the Hampton Roads, Virginia area that you will look me up and consider me for inclusion in your shortlist of people to handle your serious personal injury case.
You can contact me at Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers at (757) 455-0077. We offer free injury consultations.