David Stinson & Co Info
David Stinson & Co Personal Injury Solicitors in Aylesford, Kent: Review
We've already covered two branding options within this law firm's group, but David Stinson & Co is a slightly different one. As mentioned before, having different trading names within one law firm is quite common if the practice wishes to focus and drive more business in a specific type of case. It can also be to capitalise on the brand name the firm has locally even after merging with another firm.
On this occasion it seems that both are true because certainly the brand name is based on the titular solicitor working at the firm who has decades of experience. Plus they focus on a single area of law - personal injury.
Whilst many case types might be listed on any personal injury firm's website such as slips/trips, workplace injuries, car accidents, etc. they are all forms of litigation and typically follow the same process for a successful conclusion. A lawyer who is expert in one can usually handle any of the others just as well. The only exception to this would really be a medical negligence case against the NHS. That can be a trickier claim to navigate and we've been told by people within the industry that prior experience can really help.
All law offices that handle injury compensation claims should provide free initial consultations. In fact, you should never be charged any fees either up front or during the case. The main difference between firms on the matter of fees is how they reclaim their own costs should the case win or lose.
No win, no fee means that if the case loses you have nothing to pay. Often you will be asked to sign an 'After The Event' insurance document which insures the against losing. That way the solicitor can get their fees/costs covered. But note that 'no win, no fee' and '100% compensation guarantee' are not the same thing. The latter means that you have nothing to pay whether your case wins or loses. The first means you will have nothing to pay should your case lose. But the solicitor may take a cut of your compensation should you win. This is called a 'conditional fee arrangement' and is normally around 25% of your settlement. It should be pointed out though that a good solicitor taking 25% of your £5000 settlement is still a better option than a less aggressive solicitor that takes a 0% cut of a £1500 settlement. Something to bear in mind at least when evaluating which firm is best for you.
For more difficult cases such as medical negligence against the NHS, most lawyers will ask for a conditional fee arrangement. However for smaller more simple cases such as a two week whiplash injury as a passenger in a car accident - we would not expect the lawyer to take any part of your compensation. All law firms should be absolutely transparent about this up front before you sign anything.
Many firms claim long periods of experience with statements such as 'over 20 years experience within the firm'. This can often be misleading because if the firm has 5 solicitors with just 4 years experience - that equals a total of 20 years. Written like that, it doesn't look nearly as impressive.
So what experience is available at David Stinson & Co? Luckily The Law Society of England & Wales is a great resource for getting this kind of information. They provide all trading names of a firm, alternate office locations, other contact details, languages spoken, and the qualification dates of any solicitors within the firm. If you look up the page for David Stinson himself for example, you'll see he qualified as a solicitor in 1982. That should mean a considerable amount of experience to draw on.
The most common resource people use to research a service provider they are thinking of using is public reviews from prior clients. Some firms provide testimonials on their website which are comments they've typically obtained by direct request and often using a full feedback form with specific questions. They are therefore obviously going to be very positive and sadly they rarely contain much helpful information about what the actual good points of the firm are. 9 times out of 10 they will just be variations of 'I would recommend them highly'.
On the David Stinson & Co website there is a page marked 'Testimonials' but there aren't any actual reviews on the page. It contains what we would call 'Case Studies' where brief explanations are made about a prior case, it's problems, the actions taken, the timeframe, and the settlement. We love case studies on a law firm's website. However, we've been reviewing and working with legal professionals for over twenty years so it's part of our daily lives. We have discovered recently though that many potential clients also enjoy case studies and find them useful in getting a better feel for the law firm in question.
"My solicitor was always polite and I think she deserves a lot of credit"
"Regardless of the hurdles and obstacles the prisons threw in our way, Yasmin remained focused and driven"
"I was put at ease with my concerns and was given an ideal plan of action"
These are snippets from some of the publicly available review forums. The most commonly checked are Google, Facebook, Trustpilot, Yell.com, and Yelp. For David Stinsons and Co they are all positive and look genuine. For a name that's been around for a while, it may appear as though the number of reviews doesn't reflect that. But a lower number of reviews or even zero is something you will see for most law firms. Unlike other services such as hairdressers, restaurants, or a car wash - most people don't rush online to share their experience about a messy divorce, life-changing injury, or embarrassing bankruptcy proceedings.
A quick note on navigation for this brand as well. The official name is David Stinson & Co but variant searches such as "david stinson solicitors" or "david stinsons kent" all brought up the correct firm. It seems to be a unique name in the industry. The official website is at www.davidstinson.co.uk, and at the moment www.davidstinson.com is a different firm. Be aware that ampersands ('&') can't be part of a web address so something like www.davidstinson&co.co.uk would not exist.
The main issue with typing wrong web addresses directly into the browser bar is that when typos like that occur you can end up being redirected to a phishing site. At the moment most scams target clients engaged in a house sale. But you never know what scammers will think of next so it's often a good idea to bookmark the correct website and never discuss payments via email. Even if someone calls you claiming to be from the firm and you don't recognise them - don't be afraid to say you'll call them back on the official phone number.
General Notes: Usually if Legal Aid is possible we've mentioned it above, but you can always ask. We haven't looked in depth at their recruitment program so are unaware of any job vacancies available. For a career with David Stinson & Co it's best to visit the website (www.davidstinson.co.uk), check opening hours, and find the correct phone/email contact details. Simply emailing a CV to reception looks lazy. Each law firm's Law Society and/or SRA number should be on their site, usually at the bottom of each page.
This David Stinson & Co article is rated
4.8 / 5 based on 35 reviews. †
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