Does my medical malpractice attorney need to be licensed in Virginia?

Virginia is a tough state for personal injury and medical malpractice cases. Each state is unique, and typically lawyers are trained to practice law under their state's laws. Occasionally, rules are so different that out-of-state attorneys have trouble practicing there without experience.

For any case, it is always best to hire the attorney who has a specialization in that practice of law. If you have a medical malpractice case in Virginia, you need to hire the attorney who has the most experience with medical malpractice cases in Virginia.

There Are No General Practice Attorneys

In fiction, attorneys are typically shown as "general practice attorneys." A wealthy person hires one attorney who takes care of all of their legal issues. In real life, attorneys practice specific areas of law, and they have experience in one or two states.

Just because an attorney has a law degree, doesn't mean they are qualified to take any case. After law school, they have to pass the bar in the state where they want to practice. Next, new attorneys usually work under other, more experienced attorneys while they gain experience in their chosen practice area.

Attorneys are not "once-size-fits-all," so you need to find the attorney specialized in your type of case to get the best results.

Medical Malpractice Law is Difficult in Virginia

Hiring an out-of-state attorney for a medical malpractice claim will almost guarantee setbacks in your case. That attorney will be learning as they go, and hitting many roadblocks along the way. They are probably a great attorney in their home state, and they may have a great track record. But their lack of experience in Virginia medical malpractice cases will probably hurt the outcome of your case.

Virginia medical malpractice attorneys should also have trial experience. Most medical malpractice cases go to court in Virginia, so it is best to hire an attorney who is already familiar with trial procedure. You certainly don't want to hire an attorney with zero trial experience, or trial experience in a different state.

If you have an attorney that you love to work with in a different state, you can ask them a referral for a Virginia medical malpractice attorney. This won't hurt their feelings, in fact, they may be relieved. Attorneys know that it is better refer a case to another attorney, than to take a case out of their depth.

Ben Glass
Ben Glass is a nationally recognized Virginia injury, medical malpractice, and long-term disability attorney