Litigators who represent plaintiffs in making a case as result of negligence or careless acts by a person or company, regardless of private or government organisations, are referred to as personal injury lawyers. They specialise in claim for injuries, both monetary and non-monetary damages such as breach of contract or defamation to an individual’s reputation and rights. This legal niche is known as tort law.
Example of cases that are grouped under tort law are accidents on the roads or caused by slip and falls, flawed products and work injuries. Personal injury lawyers basically fight to secure compensation for a spectrum of losses incurred by their clients, ranging from the pain and suffering experienced to loss of ability to perform normal duties. Expenses that are included in the claims are the legal costs to fight the case as well as lawyer fees. Most cases are straight forward and can sometimes be settled without going to a full trial.
Duties required of a personal injury lawyer
Personal injury lawyers are responsible for conducting interviews with clients while assessing their cases. They will extract the key points of the case to build a solid argument. Their main focus should be, first and foremost, to obtain the compensation and justice the clients deserve. Several sessions of counseling will follow. But the case will normally head to trial if both parties fail to reach a settlement. The lawyer will then prepare the necessary legal documents and file the complaints in court.
Like every other lawyers, personal injury lawyer singapore are expected to adhere to the legal ethics laid out by the governing law body when executing their mandate with clients. Every lawyer is expected to exercise their due diligence in evaluating legal issues and the onus is on them to keep the case confidential and not breach their clients’ trust. Priority should always be for their clients!
Minimum credentials to look out for
After completing their law degree, graduates will be required to pass a mandatory written bar exam as well as an ethics exam (written). The institution will also need to be an accredited one but if the accredition is not met, there is some requirements that need to be met before they are allowed to offer law courses.
Once admitted to the bar, they are required to know the current development in their fields by continually taking legal education courses. In Singapore, there is a system called Professional Development Units (PDUs). The response have been encouraging thus far in providing educational refresher courses, ensuring that the lawyers remain updated on any legal developments. These certification programs come with a certain standard of knowledge, competence and experience that must be attained before the lawyers can be called specialists.
Normally, when lawyers pass the bar exam, they are licensed to practice and specialise in any types of the legal niche. However, inexperienced ones will normally understudy their seniors before representing the clients on their own. Most lawyers prefer to stick to a specific area of law so that they can provide a much better service in representing their clients since they are able to focus their resources efficiently. The daunting factor when doing personal injury is the numerous types of claims to fill up such as medical malpractice, workplace injury, accidents, wrongful death and many more. Choosing this path would require someone who is not only diligent in their work but meticulous enough to go through the claims in great detail because missing out a small point can cause a huge difference in the claims.
Compensation structure for personal injury lawyers
Legal fees are based on a number of factors, which include energy, time, outcome, difficulty, the experience of the lawyer, and other miscellaneous costs. Similar to divorce lawyers, there are several ways a personal injury lawyer can be compensated such as hourly rates, flat rate, contingency fees and retainers, with the most common one being contingency fees because clients feel protected since the payment is pegged on the success of the case. For such option, the lawyer will receive a percentage of the awarded amount after a successful trial. This drives the lawyer to fight for a higher compensation. On average, the compensation is about 20-30% of the final amount agreed. Hourly fees and flat rate are more common for those clients from referrals. It is easier to close from the lawyer’s perspective. Combination of all the above options have been done as well, but rarely accepted.…