Are you considering hiring a personal injury attorney for a lawsuit? Then it’s worth your time to know the realities and make a checklist that will help you find the best fit for your case.
It’s not uncommon for people to refer to personal injury lawyers as “ambulance chasers” until they need one themselves. How much would it help if you could cut past the lawyer jokes and disingenuous advice to uncover the truth? What could that be worth to your case?
You can find the answer to those questions and more within this article. Take time to learn how to find the right lawyer today and recover the damages you deserve.
Leverage Your Network
Who is the first person you would call if your life depended on their advice? Make that individual your first call to start your search. Your financial future and quality of living may depend on what they can share with you.
Don’t jump straight to Google and spend hours reading reviews for local attorneys. Talk to a trusted friend, mentor, or family member first and ask them if they have any experience with your situation. The chances are good that someone within your social circle can provide a new perspective or a recommendation.
Don’t broadcast any details, but consider extending your search to social media to maximize your network. Cultivating friends on Facebook can do more for you than provide Words with Friends opponents.
Ask Critical Questions
It’s crucial to create your list of questions specific to your situation. But, it’s also good to learn from others’ mistakes. You don’t want to forget to ask the following essential questions of your lawyer:
- Do you anticipate a settlement or going to trial?
- Who will handle the case, and how will they communicate?
- Will you provide a previous client to contact as a reference?
- Have you seen a similar situation, and what were the results?
- How many personal injury cases does your firm handle each year?
- What is the fee structure, and is working on contingency an option?
While you will want to add to this list, it’s a solid start for anyone. If you have answers that please your curiosity, it’s time to move on to your independent research and decision-making process.
Know Your Lawyer’s Reputation
You must know more than if your lawyer has the standard qualifications and education. Researching an attorney’s reputation is more than an essential piece of the puzzle – it’s an opportunity to understand who you’re about to hire. Personal injury cases can change the rest of your life, so you want to find the right attorney who gives you peace of mind before moving forward.
Start your search with the best local source for anyone, the state bar association. Complaints, disciplinary actions, or ethic violations top the list of what you may find in a lawyer’s history. The U.S. Department of Justice published an annual report that reports 2020 had an 11% increase in ethics investigations versus the previous year.
A clean record with the bar association doesn’t mean that you’ve found the right attorney for your case, however. Don’t take too much time, but dive into reviews on Google or Yelp and pay attention to how the firm responds to complaints.
Find a Personal Injury Attorney with Experience
Someone may refer you to a dynamic lawyer who knows how to get you what you deserve, but have they tried a case like yours before? Knowledge of precedence matters when negotiating settlements after a traumatic event. A personal injury lawyer will have experience with car accidents, but you should ask if they have success with one or more of the following:
- T-Bone collisions
- Head-on collisions
- Rollover accidents
- Rear-end accidents
- Muti-vehicle crashes
Specialties matter for more than finding the right type of lawyer. Your quality of life depends on what happens next, and you want a firm like Kemp, Ruge & Green Law Group on your side.
Consider Using a Referral Service
When you’re dealing with the aftermath of a personal injury, the last thing you want to do is waste time finding a lawyer to get started. You shouldn’t need insider information to have confidence in reimbursement for your suffering. State bar associations offer referral services according to the legal specialty that applies to your case.
Personal injury lawyers receive reports from local and state law enforcement about accidents. You may have already received a letter in the mail from a local attorney interested in representing you for your accident. Don’t take anyone’s word for anything and seek advice from trusted advisors.
If you’re unsure who to ask, the state bar association can help, especially with general qualifications and referrals to trustworthy attorneys.
When you use a referral service, you’re going to receive screened options for lawyers that have experience with your situation. Anyone you consider will have liability insurance, knowledge of the law around your injuries, and a clean record with the bar.
Take Note of How a Lawyer Communicates
Communication makes or breaks the success of your case. If you’re not in sync with what your attorney is doing, you run the risk of making a mistake or not receiving the compensation you had coming. The speed of their response will tell you how much attention they’re paying to your personal injury lawsuit.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- Did the attorney answer with a sense of urgency?
- What is the average wait time when you call the office?
- Did you feel heard or rushed during a free consultation?
- Did you speak with a lawyer on the phone before arriving for a consultation?
- Did a paralegal or secretary answer your questions when you first contacted the law firm?
Everyone gets frustrated with slow response times, but it’s critical to pay attention to the trends. If you find that communication drops after a case is in motion from a past client, consider interviewing more attorneys. You don’t want to feel frustration going into a personal injury trial for compensation.
If you’re reading this article, you’ve likely experienced a traumatic event that made you want more information. Now that you know how to find a personal injury attorney for a lawsuit, what comes next? Save this page, create notes, and starting making phone calls to local lawyers that will help you recover the damages you deserve.
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