Litigators and Trial Lawyers: How They Differ

litigators and trial lawyers

Most people don’t think they need a lawyer until they actually need a lawyer. The type of lawyer you need depends on your legal situation. For example, you need a criminal defense attorney for a DUI and a family attorney to handle a divorce. Before hiring an attorney, you’ll want to know the difference between litigators and trial lawyers to make sure you choose the right person for the job. 

In this blog, the personal injury lawyers at Patterson Legal Group explain the differences between litigators and trial attorneys, how to determine which one you need, and answer some FAQs. 

Litigators vs.Trial Lawyers

The terms “litigator” and “trial attorney” are often used interchangeably, but there are differences between the two. There are some key distinctions between litigators and trial lawyers that you should be aware of. 


  • Aim to win a settlement for their clients without going to trial
  • Handle all aspects of a lawsuit, from the initial filing of the complaint to the final resolution of the case
  • Prioritize negotiation to achieve a favorable outcome for their clients

Trial Attorneys: 

  • Specialize in representing clients in court
  • Possess extensive courtroom experience and expertise in handling all aspects of a lawsuit
  • Are prepared to advocate for their clients in front of a judge or jury

It is important to note that attorneys can perform both litigation and trial duties. Depending on your case and the legal services required, your lawyer might perform both litigation and trial duties. Luckily, Patterson Legal Group is a team of skilled trial lawyers who possess in-depth knowledge of personal injury law and have vast courtroom experience. Our trial lawyers have a more aggressive approach to personal injury claims and use this to secure maximum settlements for our clients.  

Litigators and Trial Lawyers in Personal Injury Claims 

When you’re injured due to someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for your damages. This can include medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses. There are two main ways to get compensation for a personal injury: settlement and trial. While only 3% to 4% of personal injury cases end up going to trial, selecting a trial lawyer for your personal injury claim ensures you will have an attorney who will stand by you and fight for the justice you deserve in the courtroom. 

Litigators and trial lawyers both have their place in personal injury lawsuits. Along with representing you in court, a trial attorney can also perform the legal tasks associated with litigators, like drafting pleadings and motions, conducting legal research, and attending hearings and conferences. 

The personal injury lawyers at Patterson Legal Group have both vast litigation and courtroom experience to fight insurance companies in court to secure a settlement and the justice you deserve.

What Type of Attorney Should I Hire? 

Hiring an attorney is not a decision to be taken lightly. If you have been injured in an accident due to another party’s recklessness or negligence, it is crucial to seek legal representation from a reputable firm like Patterson Legal Group. Our team of award-winning attorneys possesses extensive expertise in both litigation and trial law.

When hiring a lawyer to handle your personal injury case, here are some key qualities to look for in both litigators and trial attorneys. 


  • Experience negotiating with insurance companies: good litigators are well-versed in dealing with insurance companies and their tactics, such as the “delay, deny, defend” approach.
  • Understanding of insurance company tactics: experienced litigators can identify and effectively counter the strategies employed by insurance companies to minimize payouts and successfully counter them. 
  • Ability to assess the value of injury claims: to ensure you receive the settlement you deserve, a litigator must be able to  evaluate the worth of your injury claim to ensure you receive fair compensation.

Trial Attorneys:

  • Experience selecting a favorable jury: trial attorneys should be skilled at selecting jurors who are likely to be receptive to their arguments and sympathetic to your case.
  • Superior oral communication skills: skilled trial attorneys must possess exceptional oral communication skills to effectively present your case to the jury and the judge and sway them in your favor. 
  • Ability to explain complicated legal and financial terms: an experienced trial lawyer should be able to simplify complex legal and financial matters related to your case, making them understandable to the jury and the judge.

While most of our cases are won through settlements, our team of trial attorneys are prepared to fight for you in court. We will use our vast courtroom experience as well as our experience negotiating with insurance companies to ensure you receive the maximum compensation you deserve.

Contact Patterson Legal Group Today 

The team at Patterson Legal Group can provide you with the legal support you need to win your personal injury claim. We are fully prepared to go to trial and fight the insurance companies to see that you win compensation for lost wages, pain and suffering, medical bills, loss of consortium, and more

With more than 75 years of combined experience successfully representing injury victims in Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma, we are ready to take on your case. We have a track record of winning superior settlements for our clients. Our firm offers free case consultation and works on a “no win, no fee” basis, which means that you do not pay a dime unless money has been recovered on your behalf.

To get started on your case, call us 24/7 at (888) 687-2400. You can also fill out this contact form or reach out via LiveChat.

The information on this blog is for informational purposes only. It is not meant to serve as legal advice for an individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship nor does viewing this material constitute an attorney-client relationship.