There are over 98,000 attorneys licensed to practice law in the State of Texas, and over 28,800 in the Houston area alone. With so many lawyers to choose from, finding the right one to hire for your medical malpractice case might feel challenging.
Many people who are suffering from injuries and harm caused by medical errors have never hired an attorney before—for any reason. Some are tempted to take the easy route of calling a lawyer who they’ve seen on a TV or billboard ad.
I can quickly tell you that this isn’t the best way to find a Texas medical malpractice attorney who can help you. In my experience, even if that type of lawyer takes your case, they’ll only try to refer or farm it out to another attorney and keep a portion of the attorney’s fee. Who knows whether the new lawyer is experienced or competent enough to handle a medical malpractice case.
Medical malpractice law in Texas is complicated and challenging and requires an attorney who understands exacting requirements for things like pre-suit notice, the pre-suit disclosure of treaters and health records release, the “Chapter 74” expert report requirement, medical experts, and much more.
If you’re looking into finding a good Texas medical malpractice lawyer, I recommend that you do your own research. For each attorney that you consider, write down the answers to these questions, which you can easily find online:
(1) Does their State Bar of Texas profile show any disciplinary history?
(2) Is the law firm established in the community, with a real office? Look for a photo of their office on their website, or search their address on Google Maps.
(3) Is the law firm a member of the Better Business Bureau and, if so, do they have an A+ rating?
(4) Is the law firm a member of a chamber of commerce?
(5) Does the attorney have a 10/10 Avvo rating?
(6) Is the attorney AV rated (the highest possible rating for competence and ethics) by Martindale Hubbell?
(7) Has the attorney published articles in legal journals or online about medical malpractice cases and health issues?
When talking with an attorney or law office, ask these additional questions:
(1) Do you focus on medical malpractice cases?
(2) What experience do you have in handling medical malpractice cases as a lead attorney?
(3) If I hire your firm, will you do the work, or will you refer the case to someone else?
(4) If you file my case and it doesn’t settle, do you have the resources and willingness to take it to trial?
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Robert Painter is an award-winning medical malpractice attorney at Painter Law Firm PLLC, in Houston, Texas. He is a former hospital administrator who represents patients and family members in medical negligence and wrongful death lawsuits all over Texas.