An objective way to assess a lawyer . . .
A Martindale-Hubbell rating guides buyers of legal services and those referring business in making faster, smarter decisions. A rating’s third party validation of ethics and legal ability provides that extra level of confidence that the right lawyer or firm has been selected. By combining a rating with a review of other data in a lawyer’s Professional Biography – such as practice areas, bar memberships, professional affiliations, education and clients – a person can be certain he or she has made the right choice for that particular legal matter.
How its done . . .
The Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings service, which evaluates lawyers and law firms in the United States and Canada, is based on the confidential opinions of members of the Bar and the Judiciary, including both those who are rated and those who are not. Martindale-Hubbell representatives conduct personal interviews to discuss lawyers under review with other members of the Bar. A compilation of these opinions from various sources is necessary to form a consensus, and lawyers under review are sometimes asked to provide professional references to assist with the process. In addition, eConfidential – a Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™ service of secure online surveys – or paper review sheets are sent to lawyers and judges in the same geographic location, area of practice or industry as the lawyer being rated. Members of the Bar are instructed to assess their colleague’s legal ability and general ethical standards.
What it means . . .
There are two components to Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings:
- General Ethical Standards Rating
The General Ethical Standards Rating denotes adherence to professional standards of conduct and ethics, reliability, diligence and other criteria relevant to the discharge of professional responsibilities. The General Recommendation Rating is:
- V – Very High
A lawyer must receive a General Ethical Standards Rating before his or her review can proceed to the next step.
- Legal Ability Ratings
Legal Ability Ratings take into consideration the standard of professional ability in the area where the lawyer practices, the lawyer’s expertise, and other professional qualifications. If a lawyer’s practice is limited or specialized, Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings are based on performance in those specific fields of law.
Legal Ability Ratings are:
- C – Good to High
- B – High to Very High
- A – Very Hight to Preeminent
When both categories of Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings are confirmed, a lawyer receives an CV®, BV®, or AV® rating.
- AV® Peer Review RatingAn AV® certification mark is a significant rating accomplishment – a testament to the fact that a lawyer’s peers rank him or her at the highest level of professional excellence.
Shepard, Smith & Cassady, P.A. is AV® Rated.