John P. Stengel
Distinguished Trial Specialist Serving Lancaster and Southeastern Pennsylvania
Attorney John Philip Stengel is a partner at the Lancaster law firm of Eager Stengel Quinn Sofilka & Babic, where he focuses his practice on the representation of people who have suffered a serious personal injury or wrongful death caused by another’s negligence. Admitted to the Pennsylvania Bar in 1992, Mr. Stengel has 25 years of experience in Pennsylvania state and federal courtrooms representing parties in serious personal injury and wrongful death matters, including auto, truck and motorcycle accidents, falls, defective products injuries and workplace accidents. He has had multiple notable cases over the years published in various legal journals and newspapers.
Mr. Stengel is certified as a Specialist in Civil Trial Law by the National Board of Trial Advocacy, which is the only organization recognized by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court as capable of certifying legal specialists in Pennsylvania. He is also rated AV Preeminent by Martindale Hubbell, which is the highest rating awarded by this prestigious legal directory, denoting attainment of the highest degree of legal ability, professionalism and ethics as rated by his peers in the legal profession.
Mr. Stengel has represented both plaintiffs and defendants in personal injury matters and maintains a keen insight into the strategies and tactics employed by the other side in civil litigation. This dual experience gives Mr. Stengel an added edge when negotiating with his opponents or confronting them in court.
Mr. Stengel completed his undergraduate studies at Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster and earned his law degree from Duquesne University School of Law in Pittsburgh. He is a member of the Pennsylvania Bar Association and the Lancaster Bar Association. He is admitted to practice in all Pennsylvania state courts, as well as the U.S. District Courts for the Eastern and Middle Districts of Pennsylvania.
John is a second generation attorney whose father practiced in Lancaster for 50 years. John’s wife Marycatherine was born and raised in Lancaster and has taught in the Hempfield School District for 25 years. They are proud parents of Luke, a Hempfield student; Andrew, a Hempfield graduate and University of Pittsburgh student; and Catie, a Hempfield and University of Pittsburgh graduate.
Why Hire a Board Certified Attorney
Lancaster attorney John P. Stengel is certified as a Civil Trial Specialist by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. Sounds good, but what does it really mean, and how does it benefit you to hire an attorney who is board-certified? Read on for more information about board certification, and contact the law office of John P. Stengel if you need a civil law specialist in southeastern Pennsylvania.
There are several different organizations out there which certify attorneys in different specialty areas, but the National Board of Trial Advocacy (NBTA) is the only organization accredited by the American Bar Association and approved by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court to certify attorneys as specialists in Pennsylvania. To obtain NBTA certification in Civil Trial Law, attorneys must demonstrate extensive jury trial experience and undergo a rigorous examination, along with a peer review process that includes judicial references as well. Of course, the NBTA certification process also includes a thorough review of the attorney’s disciplinary history to ensure that board-certified specialists exhibit high levels of ethics and professionalism along with their legal expertise.
Personal Injury Trial Law is a Specialty Field
Lawyers are not restricted to work in any particular field or specialty. Some will work in any area, and some can probably handle a wide range of different subjects competently. For instance, most lawyers can probably draft a basic will or dispute a traffic ticket in court with a little research and preparation. But if you need to create an irrevocable trust, or if you are charged with a serious felony, you want an attorney who specializes in estate planning or criminal defense to represent you.
The same is true in the event of a personal injury. Any lawyer can take on a car accident case, even if he or she has never handled a personal injury case before. But if you want to be assured that you will get the best settlement from the insurance company, you want an attorney who specializes in personal injury matters and practices exclusively in this area.
Although most cases settle without going to trial, it is a mistake to think you don’t need an experienced courtroom attorney on your side. Obtaining a good settlement (beyond just accepting the insurance company’s low initial offer) requires that your attorney litigate the case. This means that your attorney will prepare your case from day one as if it were going to trial. When the insurance company sees that you are represented by an experienced trial lawyer who is ready to go to court, they are much more likely to deal fairly and offer a high-quality settlement rather than risking a trial with a courtroom specialist.
What Does it Mean to be AV Rated?
The AV Rating is published by Martindale-Hubbell, the oldest and most prestigious law directory in the United States. The law directory was first published in 1868 so that an attorney with legal needs away from home would be able to find a reliable lawyer or law firm anywhere in the country. Even back then, companies abounded which would sell listings to lawyers and then promote them based on the price they paid. Then as now, Martindale refuses to sell listings to maintain the integrity of its listings and keep the public’s trust.
For more than a century now, Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings have been the gold standard in attorney ratings, informing members of the legal profession and the public about a particular lawyer’s legal ability and ethical standards. The attorney’s legal ability is assessed through anonymous peer reviews rating the attorney on a five-point scale in five different categories: Legal Knowledge, Legal Experience, Judgment, Communication Ability and Analytical Capabilities. The attorney’s peers are also asked for their views on the attorney’s ethical standards.
Once a sufficient number of reviews have been compiled to serve as a trustworthy source, the results are aggregated and given a rating, such as Notable, Distinguished, or AV Preeminent. AV Preeminent is the highest rating awarded by Martindale-Hubbell. It designates an attorney who is ranked by a large number of peers at the highest level of professional excellence for legal knowledge, communication skills and ethical standards.
Trust the Source Other Attorneys Trust When They Need Help
Attorneys themselves appreciate the AV Rating. When lawyers need to hire other lawyers for their own legal needs, they know they can trust an AV rated attorney to provide high quality legal service with a high degree of ethics and professionalism. Attorneys also look for the AV rating when they refer a client to another attorney for a particular matter. A large part of John P. Stengel’s business comes through referrals from other attorneys, who rely on the AV rating along with John’s excellent reputation with the Pennsylvania Bar.