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Navigating Lawyer Advertising: Why Selecting Your Personal Injury Lawyer Requires More Than Just Ads

So you hired a “national” law firm to handle your injury case, and you haven’t spoken to a lawyer yet and have tons of questions that are yet to be answered?

Lawyer advertising is great, right?  Well, it is great to the extent that it permits consumers to have information that would otherwise be harder to access. In the days prior to lawyer advertisements, in order for a person to gain information about a lawyer or law firm for an injury case, they would have to have personal experience with an injury lawyer or know someone who was involved in such a case. The other option in the past was to ask for the recommendation of a lawyer that you know. The justification for lawyer advertisements is that many people in our society do not have experience in personal injury cases and therefore have no idea who does this kind of work, and/or they do not have a lawyer who is a friend or relative from whom they could get a referral. So, it makes perfect sense that The Bar would support the idea of providing this information to those who need it.

Just like everything else in the world, good things can become less good when taken to extremes or when used improperly. The good things about lawyer advertising can be turned into bad things if the information leads one to make rash decisions without due diligence. For example, if a law firm’s advertisements are the sole basis for you making a decision on who the right lawyer is for your case, perhaps that is not the best thing for you as a client.

To best explain why this may not be the best method of selecting your injury lawyer, let’s examine how this selection would have taken place before lawyer advertising. In the old days, the method of selecting a lawyer for your injury would have involved a personal recommendation based upon the review of someone who had used that lawyer or the impression of a lawyer who knew that injury lawyer. This meant that the recommendation was coming from a source that verified that the person you are hiring is qualified and does his or her job well. This verification is missing if your sole method of selecting a lawyer is based upon ONLY ADVERTISEMENTS.  Lawyer ads are a reflection of only how that lawyer sees himself or herself, not exactly the best objective measure of how they will perform for you.

The more ads you see for a particular firm (mine included), the MORE you should seek out other information on the firm. Some marketing strategies hope that you will only use advertisements as the sole source before you make your call.

Lawyers, like other advertisers, will utilize language that will entice you to base your decision ONLY on their ad, hoping you do not perform any other analysis or investigation. This does not serve you well in selecting an injury lawyer.

Selecting a lawyer for your injury or wrongful death case should necessarily involve more than just reading our ads. You should also read reviews, ask lawyers that you know, ask people that you know who may have had an injury case, etc. Just because there are lawyer advertisements does not mean you should do nothing else to make certain that the lawyer is the right one for your case. For example, you may find out after reading an ad that the law firm is not based in the area where you saw the ad and that the lawyer in the advertisement is not actually working anywhere near your area.  You might also find out that the office in your area is mainly staffed with non-lawyers, and you really never have a chance to speak with a lawyer before being asked to sign up with their firm. This should never be the case. You should always speak to and, preferably, meet with the lawyer you are hiring. If they do not have time to meet with you at that point in the case, it is likely that they will not have time to meet with you later in the process.

While there are many personal injury lawyers, not all of them have equal training and qualifications. Lawyers are usually prohibited by the Florida Bar from calling themselves “experts” in a particular field. However, the Bar does allow some lawyers who have extensive experience and peer recognition in personal injury to take a test to become Board Certified Civil Trial Specialists. Although only 1% of Florida lawyers are board-certified in a civil trial, two out of the three lawyers at Zarzaur Law hold this certification.

Since all personal injury lawyers have the same “no cost no fee unless you win” payout structure, there is no reason not to hire someone who is not a specialist.

Joe Zarzaur is a Board Certified Civil Trial Attorney whose firm has been dedicated to promoting community safety since 2007. ZARZAUR LAW’S AREAS OF PRACTICE: Serious Personal Injury, Product Defect, Auto Accidents, Cycling Accidents, Motor Vehicle Accidents, Products Liability, Wrongful Death, Community Safety, Boat and Jet Ski Accidents, Slip and Fall Injuries, and more. Licensed in Alabama and Florida.

If you’ve been injured in a car accident, it’s important that you don’t make any rash decisions. Put yourself in the best possible position to receive the justice you deserve. It is also important to consult a Board-Certified Trial Lawyer with the knowledge and experience to help you. We know accidents can be stressful, and we want to make the process as easy as possible for you.

Call Zarzaur Law, P.A. today at (855) Hire-Joe for a free legal consultation or visit