You have Now Googled “Best Personal Injury Attorneys Near Me.” 

Paid Advertisers.  You see the top page full of paid advertisers.   But are they good attorneys?

Local Map Results.  You see the local maps.   Well, that’s just who is close to where you currently are at.

Organic 1st Page Listings.  Just because they are first page Google, does that mean they are good?  Who are the attorneys that other attorneys hire when they are really hurt or have a large injury case?

This is what to look for:

(1).  Trial Lawyer.  It is critical that you hire a personal injury jury trial lawyer.  The GOLD STANDARD in being a Utah personal injury attorney is to be a jury trial lawyer.  This means that each year that  attorney tries 1-3 jury trials and ask jurors for compensation for their  clients.  Sometimes they lose, sometime they win.  But win or lose, trying cases gets the insurance company’s attention.

Insurance companies know which Utah personal injury attorneys can actually try a lawsuit and which ones are scared and which ones don’t have the money to go all the way.  If you hire an attorney who is not a trial lawyer, you will get inferior results.

Utah personal injury attorney Jake Gunter is a trial lawyer for nearly 20 years.  Actual courtroom, jury trial experience doesn’t come fast and the supermajority of attorneys have never conducted a jury trial.  Many lawyers have never even set foot inside a courtroom.  Jake Gunter has over 2,000 court appearances and 27 jury trials, along with 150 plus bench and evidentiary hearings.

When you are hiring an attorney don’t settle for being shoved off to the young associate attorney who has no trial experience.  The big TV advertisers generally hire young attorneys and attorneys who don’t try lawsuits.

(2).  Financial Ability to Hire Expert Witnesses.   Serious Utah personal injury lawyers have the financial ability to hire the best expert witnesses to capture all the damages in your case.  Expert witnesses cost a ton of money.  It is common to incur $5,000 or more in expert witness fees in taking even a small case to trial.

If the attorney you hired doesn’t even have staff, or other attorneys working for them, it is a good sign that they can’t afford to hire the appropriate expert witnesses for your case.  The attorney must be able to absorb the expert witness costs and carry them for sometimes years.

Sometimes, the attorney who can’t afford case costs will pressure a settlement because their case costs are soaring and they need the money.  Simply put, small firms are generally not able to carry expert witness costs and your case will be devalued without appropriately retained expert witnesses.

Trial lawyer Jake Gunter is an owner at Howard Lewis & Petersen, PC.  Established in 1950, Howard Lewis & Petersen has around 20 people working at the firm and has the ability to hire the best expert witnesses.  When the case merits it, Jake Gunter will hire the best experts to present the best version of his client’s case.

(3).  Regularly Practices Personal Injury Law.  You will get better results when you hire an attorney who regularly and consistently practices Utah personal injury law.  Don’t hire a dabbler, an attorney who occasionally stumbles upon a car accident case.   Handling 1-3 injury cases per years is not regular.  Nor will they be good at it.

The test is look at the attorney’s website and see what they advertise. Do they claim to do family law, bankruptcy, business law and personal injury?  A bad sign.   Ask the attorney what his actual case load is, how many cases he is handling and how many of his cases are actually personal injury cases?  You will be surprised that most people advertise injury work, but few actually do it full-time.

Attorney Jake Gunter day-in, day-out handles injury cases.  Dog bites, slip-and-falls, car accidents, professional malpractice, boating collisions, ATV accidents.  He is a courtroom lawyer and only practices criminal defense and personal injury.  That is it.