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How to Choose the Best Personal Injury Lawyer for Your Case

How to Choose the Best Personal Injury Lawyer for Your Case

So, you’ve been injured in an accident, and someone else could be responsible. You know you have a case, but you aren’t sure you should manage the fight alone. That means you need a lawyer. But how do you choose the right attorney for your case?

If you want to find the best personal injury lawyer for your case, follow these simple steps.

1. Do Your Research

Step one for finding the right personal injury lawyers for your case is to do your research. First, you want to identify attorneys working in your local area that specialize in personal injury cases. Most law offices focus on specific subsections of the law referred to as specialties. To ensure you get the most capable representation, it is ideal to choose an attorney with a thorough understanding of the case law involved.

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Next, you need to research any local personal injury firms that you have identified. Check out what is listed on their business websites, and check review websites for feedback from previous clients. The reason you need to complete this kind of research is to narrow down your current options. Large cities have a wide selection of attorneys from which to choose, and it isn’t feasible to contact everyone on the list. Your research will help determine who you should call, and who you should pass over.

2. Make the Calls and Schedule Consultations

Now that you have a list narrowed down, it is time to make some phone calls. Your initial inquiry should focus on discovering details regarding the firm’s consultation services. Many law firms offer free consultations to potential new clients, but that isn’t necessarily the standard. During your call, you need to determine whether the cost associated (if any) is reasonable based on your needs.

If you decide that the fee is manageable, or find out the consultation is free, schedule an appointment. Once the appointment is made, move on to the next law office on your list. Repeat until you have covered every attorney on your list.

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It is better to schedule several consultations so you can get different perspectives regarding your case.

3. Prepare for the Consultations

Before heading to any appointments, gather up any pertinent information regarding your case. This can include accident reports, medical records, police statements, photographs, and any other demonstrative evidence that helps support your case. By collecting everything in advance, you are prepared to provide any information that is currently available to assist the personal injury lawyer during the discussion.

You also need to create a list of standard questions for the attorneys. This should include questions about any fees or hourly rates, what services they are willing to provide, and what will be expected of you as things progress.

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4. Attend the Consultation Meetings

When your appointment times arrive, bring your prepared information and list of questions to review with the attorney. Make sure to bring extra paper and a pen to take notes as your questions are answered, and the information is reviewed. After each appointment, gather your notes and keep them in a safe place.

Regardless of the success of your first appointment, it is important to attend every consultation you have scheduled. That way, you can compare the costs and services offered to make the ideal selection for your case.

Compare Your Options

After all of your consultations are complete, bring out your notes and compare. Choose the attorney that meets your financial requirements and that inspires confidence in their abilities. Ultimately, they will work closely with you throughout the case, so you need to make sure that all expectations are well aligned and that the financial component is manageable based on your current situation.

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Once you have identified your top choice from the list of personal injury lawyers, make the call and secure their services. Then you can go forward with your case knowing you have made the best selection for you.

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Last Updated on June 6, 2019

Science Says Silence Is Much More Important To Our Brains Than We Think

Science Says Silence Is Much More Important To Our Brains Than We Think

In 2011, the Finnish Tourist Board ran a campaign that used silence as a marketing ‘product’. They sought to entice people to visit Finland and experience the beauty of this silent land. They released a series of photographs of single figures in the nature and used the slogan “Silence, Please”. A tag line was added by Simon Anholt, an international country branding consultant, “No talking, but action.”

Eva Kiviranta the manager of the social media for VisitFinland.com said: “We decided, instead of saying that it’s really empty and really quiet and nobody is talking about anything here, let’s embrace it and make it a good thing”.

Finland may be on to something very big. You could be seeing the very beginnings of using silence as a selling point as silence may be becoming more and more attractive. As the world around becomes increasingly loud and cluttered you may find yourself seeking out the reprieve that silent places and silence have to offer. This may be a wise move as studies are showing that silence is much more important to your brains than you might think.

Regenerated brain cells may be just a matter of silence.

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     A 2013 study on mice published in the journal Brain, Structure and Function used differed types of noise and silence and monitored the effect the sound and silence had on the brains of the mice.[1] The silence was intended to be the control in the study but what they found was surprising. The scientists discovered that when the mice were exposed to two hours of silence per day they developed new cells in the hippocampus. The hippocampus is a region of the brain associated with memory, emotion and learning.

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    The growth of new cells in the brain does not necessarily translate to tangible health benefits. However, in this instance, researcher Imke Kirste says that the cells appeared to become functioning neurons.

    “We saw that silence is really helping the new generated cells to differentiate into neurons, and integrate into the system.”

    In this sense silence can quite literally grow your brain.

    The brain is actively internalizing and evaluating information during silence

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      A 2001 study defined a “default mode” of brain function that showed that even when the brain was “resting” it was perpetually active internalizing and evaluating information.

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      Follow-up research found that the default mode is also used during the process of self-reflection. In 2013, in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, Joseph Moran et al. wrote, the brain’s default mode network “is observed most closely during the psychological task of reflecting on one’s personalities and characteristics (self-reflection), rather than during self-recognition, thinking of the self-concept, or thinking about self-esteem, for example.

      “When the brain rests it is able to integrate internal and external information into “a conscious workspace,” said Moran and colleagues.

      When you are not distracted by noise or goal-orientated tasks, there appears to be a quiet time that allows your conscious workspace to process things. During these periods of silence, your brain has the freedom it needs to discover its place in your internal and external world.

      The default mode helps you think about profound things in an imaginative way.

      As Herman Melville once wrote,[2]

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      “All profound things and emotions of things are preceded and attended by silence.”

      Silence relieves stress and tension.

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        It has been found that noise can have a pronounced physical effect on our brains resulting in elevated levels of stress hormones. The sound waves reach the brain as electrical signals via the ear. The body reacts to these signals even if it is sleeping. It is thought that the amygdalae (located in the temporal lobes of the brain) which is associated with memory formation and emotion is activated and this causes a release of stress hormones. If you live in a consistently noisy environment that you are likely to experience chronically elevated levels of stress hormones.

        A study that was published in 2002 in Psychological Science (Vol. 13, No. 9) examined the effects that the relocation of Munich’s airport had on children’s health and cognition. Gary W. Evans, a professor of human ecology at Cornell University notes that children who are exposed to noise develop a stress response that causes them to ignore the noise. What is of interest is that these children not only ignored harmful stimuli they also ignored stimuli that they should be paying attention to such as speech. 

        “This study is among the strongest, probably the most definitive proof that noise – even at levels that do not produce any hearing damage – causes stress and is harmful to humans,” Evans says.[3]

        Silence seems to have the opposite effect of the brain to noise. While noise may cause stress and tension silence releases tension in the brain and body. A study published in the journal Heart discovered that two minutes of silence can prove to be even more relaxing than listening to “relaxing” music. They based these findings of changes they noticed in blood pressure and blood circulation in the brain.[4]

        Silence replenishes our cognitive resources.

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          The effect that noise pollution can have on cognitive task performance has been extensively studied. It has been found that noise harms task performance at work and school. It can also be the cause of decreased motivation and an increase in error making.  The cognitive functions most strongly affected by noise are reading attention, memory and problem solving.

          Studies have also concluded that children exposed to households or classrooms near airplane flight paths, railways or highways have lower reading scores and are slower in their development of cognitive and language skills.

          But it is not all bad news. It is possible for the brain to restore its finite cognitive resources. According to the attention restoration theory when you are in an environment with lower levels of sensory input the brain can ‘recover’ some of its cognitive abilities. In silence the brain is able to let down its sensory guard and restore some of what has been ‘lost’ through excess noise.[5]

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          Summation

          Traveling to Finland may just well be on your list of things to do. There you may find the silence you need to help your brain. Or, if Finland is a bit out of reach for now, you could simply take a quiet walk in a peaceful place in your neighborhood. This might prove to do you and your brain a world of good.

          Featured photo credit: Angelina Litvin via unsplash.com

          Reference

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