If you’ve been involved in an unfortunate accident that you’re not responsible for, then you’re probably going through one of the toughest periods of your life. And times like this are when you need the services of a reputable personal injury law firm.
However, with thousands of personal injury lawyers offering their services, choosing one who will effectively represent you and fight for your rights can be challenging. Nevertheless, this doesn’t mean you can’t find the right personal injury lawyer for you.
There are several ways you can assess a personal injury attorney before hiring them. And one of these ways is by asking them questions to show their experience and expertise in your case.
1. What’s Your Specialization?
Asking about their specialization should be one of the first questions you ask a personal injury lawyer. There are several personal injury areas, and an attorney may not specialize in all of them. Therefore, you need to know whether the attorney has the relevant experience in handling cases similar to yours.
You need someone who understands the personal injury laws involved, who knows how to deal with insurance cases, and who can represent you in court efficiently.
2. What Is Your General Assessment of the Case?
Any experienced lawyer can look at a case and give you an honest opinion of what you can expect. And this is what you should be looking for in a personal injury attorney. However, your goal shouldn’t be to find a personal injury attorney who tells you you will win. Instead, your aim should be to find an attorney who will assess your case and tell you its strengths, weaknesses, and strategies to increase your success in the case.
3. Will I Participate in the Case?
The answer to this question largely depends on how your personal injury lawyer operates. Some lawyers like working independently with little help from you, and some lawyers prefer to have their clients highly involved in the case.
Even when working with the lone ranger type of personal injury lawyer, you need to make sure that you’re involved in the case on some level. And that’s because the case could significantly influence how your future will turn out.
4. If It’s Necessary Will You Take My Case to Court?
Not all personal injury cases can be settled out of court. There are times your lawyer and the insurance company disagree. And in such cases, your best solution is to present the case to court.
Unfortunately, not all personal injury lawyers can represent their clients in court effectively. Therefore, before hiring a lawyer, make sure they are willing to represent you in court if it becomes necessary.
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5. How Much Will You Charge Me?
The majority of the personal injury lawyers charge for their work on a contingency-fee-basis. It means that they will take a certain percentage of the settlement amount you’ll be awarded as their fees. Different personal injury law firms have different rates. So, it’s important to know their percentage fee or if they charge upfront.
6. Should I Expect Some Out-Of-Pocket Fees?
Even if your personal injury lawyer uses a contingency fee basis to charge clients, there may be some extra fees associated with your case. For example, expert witness fees and court reporter fees. Some law firms require you to pay either immediately or after the case is settled. Therefore, depending on your financial situation, you should know beforehand their payment policy.
7. Why Should I Work With You?
It may seem like an odd question to ask, but it’s an important one nevertheless. This question can help you gauge whether your personal injury attorney is confident about your case or not. In addition, this open-ended question will determine whether the attorney has the dedication to represent you to the end.
8. Can I Speak With One of Your Past Clients?
You can’t take the word of a prospective personal injury lawyer as gospel. There is still a lot you may not know about them. So, this question will help you gauge whether they are trustworthy by asking them about past clients. Secondly, you’ll be able to learn more about them from the perspective of another client.
9. Will You Be Able To Work on My Case Immediately?
Your time is precious. Therefore, you need a personal injury lawyer who will handle your case as soon as possible. Unfortunately, some lawyers take cases that they cannot handle immediately and leave the file to sit on their desks because they are overwhelmed by their workload. Therefore, you need to work with a lawyer whose workload will not be an obstacle to their ability to represent you effectively.