There are more than 1.3 million active lawyers in the U.S. If you’re pursuing a legal career, you have plenty of options available.
One area that gets a lot of attention is personal injury law. Before you decide to be a personal injury attorney, there are some things you should know.
Read on to learn what a personal injury lawyer salary is on average and some key facts about personal injury law.
Personal Injury Lawyer Salary
A personal injury lawyer’s salary largely depends on whether they are an employee of a firm or if they have their own practice.
Employees of law firms get paid on a regular basis. They earn between $71,431 and $94,462.
Attorneys that have their own practice work personal injury cases on a contingency basis. They get paid a percentage of the settlement, which is usually between 30% – 50%.
The risk is that if the attorney loses the case, then they don’t get paid at all. This site is an example of a law firm that works on contingency.
Personal Injury Law is Broad
Personal injury law encompasses a very broad range of cases. You could handle worker’s compensation cases, auto accidents, or product injuries. You could also defend businesses in these cases.
You can explore different options early in your career and make a decision.
Civil vs. Criminal Cases
There are two types of law in the U.S. court system. Criminal law focuses on an individual or entity breaking the law and the punishment for the crime.
Civil law is about disputes between entities and individuals. These cases are handled in civil courts. Some cases have both civil and criminal elements. There would be two separate trials, one in criminal court, and one in civil court.
The Statute of Limitations
There is a time limit in which a plaintiff can bring a case forward. This is the statute of limitations. You could have a client that has a winnable case, but they bring their case to you just before the statute of limitations expires. That may not give you enough time to get the facts and file a lawsuit in court.
Part of your job is to educate prospective clients about the statute of limitations. You should also educate them about the documentation that strengthens their case.
The Majority of Cases Settle
If you have visions of arguing a case in court and really taking it to the big corporations, you need to bring things back to reality.
The fact is that you’re likely to settle out of court. About 95% of civil cases settle out of court. Both sides avoid going to trial as much as possible because it’s time-consuming and costly.
The outcome is also in doubt. For a personal injury attorney that only gets paid when they win, the risk is too great.
Personal Injury Law Facts
A career in personal injury law can be a very rewarding one. You can help people who normally can’t afford an attorney recover from a serious injury that wasn’t their fault.
These personal injury facts opened your eyes to becoming a personal injury attorney. A personal injury lawyer salary and other important facts about personal injury law.
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