Types of Attorneys: Which One’s Right for Me?

When you’re involved in a legal case, finding the right lawyer for your case will save you time and money, reduce stress, and improve your chances of winning.

Lawyers can perform a number of crucial tasks for you. They can draft or review legal documents, mediate disputes and negotiations (in and outside of court), represent you in a lawsuit, and provide general legal advice and information.

But there are a number of different specializations within legal practice. This can be a pro and a con, as you’ll likely be able to find a lawyer with experience exactly in the field of your dispute, but it may also be harder to determine which type of lawyer you need among so many. But by doing your research, you’ll most likely be able to find a lawyer with expertise in the area of your case who can give you the best chance of success.

Here are some of the most common types of lawyers and cases they assist with.

Personal Injury Lawyer

If you have been involved in an accident that wasn’t your fault, which could have been avoided, or which occurred as a result of malpractice, then you should consult with a personal injury lawyer.  

A personal injury lawyer can guide you through the necessary steps of a lawsuit or a settlement agreement. Personal injury lawyers can also represent you if someone else is accusing you of negligence.

Social Security Disability Attorney

For disabled individuals who are seeking Social Security Disability Insurance benefits, hiring an attorney to help file your Social Security disability claim will increase the chances of your case being approved. 

From the initial application to the hearing level and beyond, disability attorneys understand how to present a case in the light most favorable to their clients. On the initial application, your lawyer can offer advice on your “alleged onset date” of disability, argue that your condition meets one of the listed impairments in Social Security’s “blue book,” and help you focus on the facts that will be most persuasive to Social Security.

Pharmaceutical Law 

Pharmaceutical litigation deals with dangerous or wrongly prescribed drugs.There are several different things that can go wrong with these drugs, including serious health side effects and death, and if you or someone you love was seriously harmed due to a drug error, pharmaceutical litigation attorneys step in to fight for justice and compensation on behalf of the victim.

Medical Malpractice Attorney

Doctors and other healthcare professionals are responsible for your wellbeing and are held to a high standard of care. If they caused an injury while you were under their care or deliberately used practices that were reckless or unsafe, a medical malpractice attorney can let you know your options and help you take action.

Civil Rights Attorney

Civil rights lawyers protect individuals and groups from discrimination and other civil rights violations through lawsuits and settlement negotiations. Your civil rights include: freedoms of speech, religion, and assembly; the right to petition the government; the right to procedural due process; and freedom from discrimination for protected classes (characteristics such sex, race, and national origin).

Environmental Law

Businesses can have a huge effect on the environment. So apart from making you good neighbors and global citizens, being environmentally conscious will protect you from lawsuits and fines. Individuals may have legal grounds to sue if businesses have contaminated groundwater or otherwise affected the environment and well-being of their area. An environmental lawyer will have the expertise both to advise businesses when it comes to their environmental impact and to represent parties who have been affected and are seeking compensation or reparations.

Class Action Attorney

If you are part of a large group that has been negatively affected by another party’s illegal actions, you may be able to sue together, creating what is called a class action lawsuit. Class action attorneys represent cases including discrimination, employees suing a company they work for, product liability, environmental issues, corporate fraud, and medical practices. 

Workers Compensation Lawyer

A workers compensation lawyer is similar to a personal injury lawyer, but focuses only on workplace injuries. Your workers compensation lawyer will help you receive compensation for medical bills, financial losses due to missed work, and pain and suffering caused by an injury due to negligence on your employer’s part.

Commercial Law

Commercial lawyers deal with commercial and business legal matters. They assist heavily with ensuring the legality of transactions and contracts, documentation, and large-scale endeavors like business mergers, but they may also help in other company issues like reviewing business practices that may be affected by new laws and defending against litigation brought against the company.

Family Law

Family lawyers handle a host of legal issues among family members, including divorces, prenuptial agreements, child custody agreements, juvenile delinquency cases, estates and wills, emancipation, and child support.

Tax Attorney

Tax attorneys deal with a variety of tax-related issues, including estate planning, using tax strategies to mitigate the costs of income and estate tax, handling tax return disputes from the IRS, and more. Tax attorneys can also assist you with litigation and settlement negotiations.

Immigration Law

Immigration attorneys can not only help you become a citizen of the country, but they can also advise and represent individuals in matters concerning green card applications, employment for non-citizens, and deportation issues.

Criminal Law

When you’re charged with any crime (misdemeanor or felony), the consequences can be serious. A criminal lawyer can assess your case and advise you on how to proceed to best defend yourself against criminal charges. 

General Practice Attorney

General practice attorneys have the advantage of not being limited to a specific area of practice, but that also means they may not have much specialization in your particular area. A general practice attorney can represent you in court, draft and review documents, and be your advocate in negotiations, and they should also be able to refer you to another attorney if your case requires a more specific expertise.

In the case of any lawsuit you’re filing or defending against, you’ll want to find a lawyer who has experience with your type of case. Some lawyers have several areas of expertise, while some only have one. But hopefully with this guide, you’ll be able to begin searching for an attorney that can help you.