In a serious or catastrophic personal injury case, the relationship between the client and the attorney necessarily becomes a close professional relationship. These cases are all about the impact of the injuries on the victim's life. In order for the attorney to properly and fully present that evidence, it is necessary for the attorney to learn all sorts of information about the client. These things include what the client enjoyed doing before the injury, what the client's plans for future employment were, the nature of the client's relationship with his or her spouse, the hopes and dreams he or she had for their children, and the like. This is very personal information. However, it is the type of information that can and should be utilized by the attorney to demonstrate the full impact that the injuries have had on the client's life. This is the type of information that can greatly affect the value of a personal injury case.
It takes a lot of trust and a very high comfort level for an individual to share this type of personal information with a relative stranger. Therefore, it is very important for a seriously injured individual seeking "the best" Pennsylvania personal injury attorney to make sure that they have the trust in, respect for and comfort with the attorney before they retain that attorney.
Some personal injury cases involve complex factual scenarios that require the investment of very significant sums of money. Certain cases -- products liability cases, industrial accidents, professional negligence cases, construction site accident cases, to name a few -- require the plaintiff's attorney to retain multiple expert witnesses -- engineers, accident reconstruction experts, safety code or OSHA code experts, etc. These individuals are called "liability experts." Each of the liability expert witnesses charge a retainer and an hourly fee for their time working on the case. Computer accident analyses and reconstructions are often done. Scale models of accident scenes are sometimes built. These steps are often necessary to prove that the defendant in a case is legally responsible for the accident and the resulting injuries. Doing all of these things can cost tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars. Only an attorney who has the resources to properly fund the case can be considered among the best Pennsylvania personal injury attorneys for that particular case. An attorney who handles serious cases on a shoestring budget is probably not among the best Pennsylvania personal injury attorneys for that case.
Developing and presenting the medical evidence in a serious or catastrophic case can be every bit as expensive as developing the liability evidence. Treating doctors charge for their time spent preparing reports, meeting with the plaintiff's attorney and testifying. When there are multiple treating doctors, this can become very, very expensive. In addition, it is often necessary to retain consultants to develop certain aspects of the serious personal injury case. For example, Life Care Planners often must be retained to itemize the nature and frequency of the plaintiff's future medical care and to estimate the cost of that future care. Vocational Rehabilitation consultants are often retained to determine the residual earning capacity or employability of the seriously injury accident victim. Forensic economists are often retained in these cases as well. These consultants are necessary to determine the cost of future medical care, future lost earnings and the like.
These costs can easily reach the high five figure range or above. When a case demands this level of economic investment, only an attorney who is willing and able to invest these amounts can truly be considered among the best Pennsylvania personal injury attorneys for that case.
Simply put, there is no single "best" Pennsylvania personal injury attorney for every case. When it comes to the serious or catastrophic injury case, the consumer of legal services -- the accident victim -- should ask many questions, including the following:
If you have found a lawyer for whom you can answer yes to these questions, there is a good chance that you have found the best Pennsylvania personal injury attorney for your case. If you cannot answer these questions affirmatively, you should probably keep looking. The best Pennsylvania personal injury lawyer for your case is out there. It's just a matter of asking the right questions to find that lawyer.
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