The Harding Law Firm News

Choosing a Lawyer and Peer Review Ratings: What to Look For

The Harding Law Firm - Tuesday, March 24, 2015

If you are going to be a buyer of legal services (also known as hiring a lawyer), looking away from the flashiest ads on TV is important – instead look for someone who has high professional ratings (and reviews by past clients is also good!).

In the legal community, Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings help identify those attorneys who are rated highly by their peers. In other words, other legal professionals have reviewed the attorney that you are researching and given him/her a Peer Reviewed Rating.

These ratings reflect a combination of achieving a Very High General Ethical Standards rating and a Legal Ability numerical rating. A threshold number of responses is required to achieve a rating.

Legal abilities, therefore are given a numerical score based on the following:

On a scale of 1 to 5 (with 1 being the lowest and 5 being the highest). These areas are:

  • Legal Knowledge - Lawyer's familiarity with the laws governing his/her specific area of practice(s)
  • Analytical Capabilities - Lawyer's creativity in analyzing legal issues and applying technical knowledge
  • Judgment - Lawyer's demonstration of the salient factors that drive the outcome of a given case or issue.
  • Communication Ability - Lawyer's capability to communicate persuasively and credibly
  • Legal Experience - Lawyer's degree of experience in his/her specific area of practice(s)

A lawyer with an AV Preeminent certification mark has scored highly and that rating is defined as:

AV Preeminent® (4.5-5.0) - AV Preeminent® is a significant rating accomplishment - a testament to the fact that a lawyer's peers rank him or her at the highest level of professional excellence.

Charles Harding, of the Harding Law Firm, is a seasoned litigator with over twenty-five years of trial experience and more than 100 jury verdicts. Charles Harding has represented individuals in all types of personal injury actions including motor vehicle accidents, construction accidents, medical malpractice, defective products, and slip and fall. Charles has been rated AV Preeminent by the Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™.

Call or email us today and get a free consultation.

First Steps & Considerations When Dealing With A Personal Inury Case

The Harding Law Firm - Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Nobody sets out to get hurt or get into an accident, but when it happens, there are some first steps to take and some things to consider directly after an event of this kind. Remember, if someone can be held responsible for the personal injury you sustained, you have legal rights and legal recourse to take.

Accident Reports

Be sure to make your accident report as detailed as possible, the more that can be recorded immediately, the better. Don’t wait and then have to rely on memory later. Everything, even minor cuts and scrapes should be documented. Trying to add injuries later might be fruitless. Don’t overlook mental or emotional details either. Keep track and get them detailed in the accident report right away.

Find a Lawyer Like Charles Harding

Don’t just call the voice speaking the loudest or most frequently on TV. Choosing your attorney this way isn’t a good idea -- check his/her reviews and ratings. Experience and track records will help you more in your case than the amount of advertising a law firm may or may not do.

Don’t Rule Out Pre-existing Conditions

Preexisting conditions don’t always dictate the amount of a personal injury award -- be up front about your previous injuries. This will help your attorney build a strong case for you.

Ask Questions and Be Informed

When meeting with a lawyer about personal injury, it’s not the time to be shy. Ask how the process will play out and all the things you may be required to do. You should feel comfortable and educated, not left in the dark wondering what will happen next.

Don’t Go At It Alone: Contact an Authority

Depending on where your injury was sustained, you should contact an authority and document everything – including the conversation. If your injury was sustained on the job, report it to your supervisor/boss right away. If there's an injury due to car accident, call an ambulance and the police as soon as you can, don’t wait until later.

About Vehicle Accidents

Don’t move your vehicle if you were involved in an auto accident. The police may ask you to do so, but wait until you are instructed to do so. Moving your car before getting police permission can cause more damage, or it can lead to questions that can’t truly be answered later, thus hurting your case. An exception might be when your car is in a busy intersection.

Bring All Documents to Your Lawyer

When you first go to your lawyer, bring all documentation. The paperwork should include, medical records and bills, any income loss and police reports. This information can help a lawyer determine if you have a case to file and/or what the approach will be.

Call or email us today and get a free consultation if you’ve been injured.