When you’ve suffered an injury from an accident that was not your fault, you’re going to need a lawyer. Whatever the incident in question was, it’s important to find an attorney who will help you get the compensation and justice you deserve. Finding the right person for the job can be tough, so here are some points to keep in mind when hiring a personal injury lawyer.
Some people are lucky and they will never have to worry about finding a personal injury lawyer. Some, unfortunately, won’t be so lucky. Since we cannot tell the future, your best option is to prepare for the worst-case scenario. There is nothing worse than being in a tricky situation and not being prepared for it. To put your best foot forward, here are some tips to keep in mind if you ever need to file a personal injury claim.
You need to know where to look
Let’s start from the beginning, How do you find a personal injury lawyer? When it comes to this question it’s always better to know the answer before you need it, rather than later. A good place to start is to ask your friends and family for any recommendations. Chances are, you already know someone who has a good lawyer. A good recommendation is important. If you can’t find any recommendations from friends or family, start by looking up local law firms. Don’t forget to search up their reviews online and make sure they’re reputable and good at what they do.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions
Before you hire a lawyer for your injury claim, you need to know your rights first. You’re allowed to question your lawyer on anything regarding your case and how they handle it. If you’re not sure your case qualifies for an injury claim, most law firms will offer you a free case evaluation. Tad Thomas, an attorney from Thomas Law Offices explains that most law firms offer to help by advising you and discussing the case, free of charge, before you decide whether to hire them. Your lawyer is under obligation, to be honest, upfront, and transparent with you. If you feel unsatisfied with how your case is being handled, or if you feel your attorney is not giving it their all, you’re allowed to change attorneys.
How much will it cost?
The next question you need to ask is how much will everything cost. Your attorney needs to be completely transparent with you. You need to know exactly what you’ll be getting into if you take them on your case. Most personal injury lawyers will work based on a contingency fee. They will usually take around 33% of whatever you recover from the case. If your lawyer does something different, make sure to clarify that with them before you start working together.
Find a lawyer best suited for your case
Not all lawyers are the same. Not all attorneys practice in the same fields, have the same experience, or have the same approach. When filing an injury claim you want your lawyer to have the most experience with your particular case. Whether it’s a medical mishap, a car accident, or a bite from a stray dog, finding the law firm or lawyer with the most experience with your case type is crucial. The approach an attorney takes with your case is also important. Some lawyers will treat your case as part of an assembly line, whereas others will be more in-depth. The key is to find the right person who will handle your case the way you want them to.
What are your lawyers’ credentials?
You can and should be interested in the credentials of the person handling your case. Your attorney should be very transparent with you about their education, skills, and experience. Did they go to the best law schools or did they even go to law school at all? How long have they been practicing? How many cases like yours have they handled and how successful were they? What are their plans for your case? These are the questions you need to ask your attorney before you choose to hire them.
Know what is expected of you
Before you hire a lawyer to handle your case, you need to make sure you take care of everything on your end. Make sure you’ve got yourself under control before your lawyer takes care of your claim. However serious your injuries were, make sure you got the necessary medical attention. This can hurt your case if you don’t. Make sure your mental health is in a good place before you contact a lawyer. Make sure to have all the necessary documents and paperwork. Be open, honest, and transparent with your lawyer if you want them to do a good job with your case.
Do they have any courtroom experience?
This is another important aspect that you’ll need to consider. Before hiring someone as your lawyer, you need to know what their level of courtroom experience is. Most personal injury claims and other civil cases, contrary to TV shows and movies, don’t end up going to trial. Be that as it may, you still want to be prepared. If your case does end up going to court, you want your attorney to represent you best and fight for your claim. Make sure to do enough research into your lawyer before you hire them.
File your case on time
Unfortunately, there is no infinite window of time for you to file a personal injury claim. Depending on the country or state where the incident happened, you will have a limited amount of time to file your claim. On average, most states allow up to 2 years after the incident to report and claim it. After that, your claim will be invalid and you will not have the right to any compensation. Take time to recover of course, but try to be as diligent as possible about your case. On the other hand, sometimes, you can claim for personal injury later than the allowed period. Factors like lack of knowledge, inexperience, or newly found evidence can lead to later-filed cases. As much as you should be punctual with your claim, don’t lose hope!
Hiring a lawyer for a personal injury claim can be stressful work. When you’re prepared, and you do the right research it becomes slightly less so. Finding a qualified and experienced lawyer and making sure you do all the necessary research is essential. You don’t need to go to law school to claim your case successfully, but not going in blindly is a good place to start.