Questions to Ask Before You Hire A Personal Injury Lawyer
Accidents are something that nobody ever wants to happen to themselves. However, they do happen, and when they happen to you, you need an excellent personal injury lawyer to handle your case. The problem is, it can be confusing to find the best person to give you a legal representation.
If you’re looking for an attorney, here are a few questions that you need to ask them:
1. Have you had experience in cases like mine?
Each state in the U.S. has bar admissions to allow a lawyer to practice law in that area. For example, if you live in Los Angeles, you’ll need Los Angeles personal injury lawyers to help you with your case. So, if you have a cousin who’s an attorney in New York, they can’t legally represent you unless they have a license to practice law in Los Angeles.
You need to find a lawyer from your local area. Ask them if they’ve handled cases similar to yours and if they won any or all those cases. If they mostly won, then that’s good because you have a high chance of winning the case, too.
2. How long have you been practicing personal injury law?
Each lawyer have their strengths and weaknesses. One can be a great personal injury lawyer, while others aren’t that experienced in other practices such as environmental or real estate law. Ask your potential personal injury attorney about how long they’ve been practicing personal injury law.
It’s essential that they have experience for personal injury law. If they’ve only had experience in business law or entertainment law, they may not have sufficient knowledge needed to win your case. They can probably try to learn what they can, but you’ll be on time constraint.
3. Who will work on my case?
Most lawyers usually work in law firms where they work in teams. A client’s case may be handled by several different people such as the senior lawyer, junior attorney, paralegal, and others. If you’re not comfortable with the various people handling your case, ask your prospective attorney if they will handle the case by themselves or other people will be involved.
While you’re talking with the lawyer, make sure that you understand what they’re telling you. There will be a lot of legal terms that you may not be familiar with, so it’s crucial that they can explain it to you in a way that you can clearly understand. It’s also a good sign that they want you to understand what could happen during the case, so you’re not clueless.
4. How much will I pay?
When you’ve been in an accident, of course, there will be money involved. Medical bills will pile up, and even if you have insurance, there might still be some issues around it, which a personal injury lawyer can help you with. Aside from that, there are also other fees that you might want to prepare your pockets for, such as court filing fees and expert witness fees. Ask your lawyer how much money you have to shell out for the case.
5. Do they work on a contingency basis?
Most personal injury lawyers work on a contingency basis. The attorney working on your case will only get paid depending on how much money you’ll get when you win or when you get a settlement. It means you won’t need thousands of dollars to file a lawsuit. Ask the lawyer you’re meeting with if they work on a contingency basis. If they are, then that’s good. If not, then try looking for a different one.
6. What’s the estimated length of the case?
Your personal injury lawyer should be straightforward when you ask them about how long the case would take. If they insist that it would be quick and won’t last for months, don’t be too trusting. They have to give you a realistic estimate. If it’s going to be a lengthy case, ask them why it might take that amount of time.
7. Can you provide any references?
Ask the lawyer if they can provide references from their previous clients. You should at least find out how they handled matters of earlier cases. You should know how highly or poorly they handled their previous cases. You can also browse online reviews if there are any. Weigh in the negatives and the positives so you know if you can trust that lawyer for your case.
In case you get involved in an accident, which hopefully won’t happen, make sure to hire a good personal injury lawyer. If you got severely injured, and you’re the provider of the family, money will be tight. But, if you have an excellent attorney to represent you in court, at least you won’t get knee deep in debt.