Personal injury claims are brought in cases of injury or wrongful death against whichever person or entity the litigant believes is to blame for their injury via their negligence or misconduct. As we have mentioned before, every state has its own guiding rules about how personal injury law is applied and this can affect many things including statute of limitations and the amount and type of compensation offered.
Should an injury occur in your own state, a locally licensed attorney will be able to guide you through the legal regulations just as we do here at STSJE for clients who are bringing cases in the courts of Oregon and Washington.
Upon returning home, ongoing medical treatment may be necessary or the accident or car crash may have resulted in a catastrophic life-changing injury which affects the litigant's lifestyle and situation in the long term.”
What happens however, when a resident of Oregon or Washington gets injured out of state? It is natural for a litigant to want to hire an attorney from his home state, as this would be the most convenient option, but in order for this to work, the home state attorney must also be licensed to practice in the state in which the claim will go to court.
In the immediate aftermath of an out-of-state accident, the injured person will have received whatever emergency medical attention was necessary at the time. Upon returning home, ongoing medical treatment may be necessary or the accident or car crash may have resulted in a catastrophic life-changing injury which affects the litigant's lifestyle and situation in the long term. All medical treatment and after effects of the injurious event will be taken into account at the time of trial.
For this reason, some people injured out-of-state elect to hire a home state attorney to prepare the parts of the case pertaining to local case factors and an out-of-state attorney to represent their interests in the state in which the accident occurred and the case is to be heard.
Both attorney firms will work together to ensure that the client receives the best counsel and that the case clearly presents all the facts relating to out-of-state and home state effects of the injury and that is follows the rules specific to the personal injury law of the state in which the case is to be heard.
Schauermann Thayer Jacobs Staples & Edwards have had experience with offering cooperative counsel to law firms from other states, most recently Florida, Utah and California.
STJSE partner, Jeff Jacobs, is a licensed pilot and regularly uses his Cessna Skyhawk to get to client meetings, court appearances and depositions all over the Northwest and as far as Bakersfield and San Luis Obispo in California.
Jeff's ability to fly into action enables the firm to follow up on witnesses, fact-checking and meetings for local clients even if their injury occurred out of state. Or if the witnesses are located out of state which was the case with a local client who was injured in Skamania County but the witnesses were located in Prineville.
So, to summarize, if you sustain an injury out of your home state, you most likely need to hire an attorney in the state in which the injury occurred. If there is ongoing medical treatment or you simply want to have the convenience of dealing with an attorney closer to home, then you should hire a local firm which will coordinate with the out of state attorney office.