Supporting You In Dealing With Trauma Why Trauma-Informed Lawyering is Crucial

24 June 2022

Many people who contact us for advice have experienced life-changing events. Our clients include people who have suffered medical negligence and been involved in cases of sexual abuse. 

Trauma-informed lawyers understand that trauma manifests itself in many ways and that our responses to trauma are unique. A trauma-informed lawyer recognises that asking clients to recount their accident, injury, or assault can be extremely difficult. Just telling your story can be enough to induce severe anxiety and stress. Some clients compare the process of repeatedly giving their account to being traumatised all over again.

Litigation is invariably stressful, but it is possible to minimise the negative emotions that go with such a difficult process. Done well, trauma-informed lawyering can be empowering for clients and give them a sense of control over their case.

To achieve this, we work hard to understand how your injury has affected your life. We appreciate this can take time and might require the views of various experts. We take this seriously and often work with psychiatrists and psychologists to ensure we understand our clients.

Clients are unique, and each one deserves an equally tailored and personal approach. We can only fully value a claim once we have completely understood its impact on your life and wellbeing. Gaining such an understanding means giving you the chance to tell your story in the way that best suits you and makes you feel heard at all times.

Trauma-informed lawyering is not only relevant to our work with you, it is also vital to how we guide you at the point when proceedings become more adversarial. We know that litigation becomes especially daunting when the other side discredits your version of events or seems to minimise your suffering. We understand that this is when a personal and empathetic approach becomes most important.

Although each client is unique, there are certain steps that we consider to be best practice when helping our clients. Such good practice includes:

  • Ensuring that you have a dedicated lawyer who will be your key point of contact;
  • Being transparent and clear about the litigation process and keeping you informed of the next steps;
  • Discussing your options throughout and empowering you to make your own decisions in your claim;
  • Fostering a relationship of trust with your best interests being our priority;
  • Adapting our working practices to your preferences. For example, some individuals would like to tell their stories face-to-face, while others prefer expressing themselves in writing.
  • Exploring vulnerable witness measures and ensuring anonymity where possible.
  • Ensuring that you are fully prepared for a settlement meeting or a trial.

We take these steps because we want to help our clients obtain the best possible outcome with the least stress.

Further information

If you have any questions or comments about the topics discussed in this blog, please contact Eurydice Cote or any member of the Medical Negligence & Personal Injury team.

About the author

Eurydice is a Senior Associate in the Clinical Negligence and Personal Injury Team. She represents individuals who have sustained catastrophic injuries. Eurydice has helped clients with traumatic injuries, including spinal cord injury, amputation, orthopaedic injuries, gastrointestinal injuries and loss of vision.

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We welcome views and opinions about the issues raised in this blog. Should you require specific advice in relation to personal circumstances, please use the form on the contact page.

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