5 Reasons Your San Antonio Personal Injury Lawyer Should be Board Certified
The search for a San Antonio personal injury attorney can be confusing. Searching online will turn up many, many attorneys who take local personal injury cases, and it can be difficult to determine which would be the best fit for you and your case. Recommendations from friends and family can be helpful, but their experiences are typically limited.
Fortunately, in Texas, there’s one quick and easy way to narrow down your options: look for an attorney who is Board Certified in Personal Injury Law.
What Does it Mean to Be Board Certified in Texas?
The Texas Board of Legal Specialization (TBLS) certifies Texas attorneys in various areas of legal practice. TBLS is authorized by the Texas Supreme Court. One of those certifications is in Personal Injury Trial Law. There are more than 100,000 licensed attorneys in the state of Texas. Just 1,334–about 1.3%–are Board Certified in Personal Injury Trial Law.
Here’s why certification matters to you if you’ve been injured in a San Antonio car accident or suffered some other type of personal injury.
Advantages of a Board Certified Personal Injury Lawyer
When you hire an attorney who is Board Certified in Personal Injury Trial Law, you know that attorney:
- Has at least five years of full time legal practice experience in the state of Texas, so you can be confident that your attorney has a working knowledge of Texas law and procedure. Note that the requirement isn’t simply that the attorney has been licensed for at least five years, but that they have actively been practicing law for at least five years, and have done so in Texas.
- Has at least three years of personal injury trial law experience, with at least 25% of their legal practice devoted to personal injury work, and has tried at least 10 personal injury cases. This means the attorney has significant experience with this specific area of law, which isn’t necessarily true for every lawyer who advertises personal injury services.
Just as important, having tried at least 10 relevant cases ensures that the lawyer is willing and able to take the case to trial if that’s the best approach for a particular case. That’s important because some personal injury attorneys build their practices on settlements. Often, settling a case is right for the case and the client. But, the most effective personal injury lawyer will be prepared to either negotiate for the best possible settlement or argue the case to the jury as needed.
- Has references from judges and other attorneys in the area. In other words, you know that other professionals in the field who know the attorney’s work are willing to vouch for their qualifications.
- Has completed at least 60 hours of continuing legal education in personal injury trial law. This helps ensure that the attorney is keeping their skills fresh and keeping up-to-date on changes in the law, relevant court decisions, best practices for evidence, and other skills and knowledge specific to the practice of Texas personal injury law.
- Has taken and passed a 6-hour examination in the area of personal injury trial law. The test is designed to ensure that a personal injury attorney has the skills and knowledge required to successfully manage all stages of a personal injury case. Some examples include effective communication, jury selection, analysis of case facts, application of rules and law, draft pleadings and motions, conduct discovery, and more.
Certification isn’t a one-time event. A Board Certified attorney must recertify every five years, to ensure continuing qualification. An attorney applying for recertification must complete 100 hours of specialty-related continuing legal education by the end of the fifth year.
Of course, these are minimum requirements. Many Board Certified attorneys far exceed these minimums. For example, Humberto G. Garcia, who is Of Counsel to the George Salinas Injury Lawyers, has been practicing law in Texas for more than 40 years, has tried more than 125 cases before Texas juries, and has been Board Certified in Personal Injury Trial Law since 1989.
Talk to a Board Certified Personal Injury Lawyer
Seeking out an attorney who is Board Certified in Personal Injury Trial Law is one way to quickly narrow down the wide and sometimes confusing range of possibilities. When you choose a Board Certified lawyer, you can rest assured that the attorney is experienced, has continued to educate themselves about developments in the field, has the trust of other attorneys and judges who are familiar with their work, and has passed an examination designed to measure their skills and knowledge in the area of Texas personal injury law.
To learn more about how George Salinas Injury Lawyers can help you fight for your rights after an injury, schedule a free consultation right now. We’ll help you build your claim, negotiate a settlement and get you the maximum accident compensation benefits possible. We’ve recovered over $500 million in damages for our clients. The expenses associated with an accident can be high, so you won’t pay us unless we win your case.
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