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How to choose personal injury lawyers

Jul 9, 2021 | Legal Articles

Moussa Sabzehghabaei

Personal Injury Lawyer

 

Things to consider when choosing a personal injury lawyer who is right for you: what you must know

Suffering a personal injury as a result of another’s negligence such as in a car accident or slip and fall can be an overwhelming experience. You may feel alone and unsure what to do. Moreover, recovering compensation from the insurer of the other party or company may seem difficult or at times impossible. But do not be discouraged! At this time of need we want to make sure that your rights are protected and that you are receiving the necessary resources to assist with your care, with the best legal representation.
Here are some general guidelines on choosing the right personal injury lawyer for your case. It is important to keep these in mind when consulting with personal injury lawyers initially and deciding who is right for you.

personal injury lawyer

Do Thorough Research

Step 1 – Why Do You Need a Personal Injury Lawyer?

If you or your loved one has suffered severe injuries, you already know how disoriented you can become. The good news is that hiring an experienced personal injury lawyer can help you seek the amount of compensation you may be entitled to. Here are some of the reasons you need an experienced personal injury lawyer on your side.

Lawyers are professional and can make objective decisions regarding your case. Most personal injuries cause excruciating pain and emotional upheaval. This level of trauma can make it challenging for the victim of the accident to make objective decisions regarding the injury case. An experienced personal injury lawyer can help file an injury claim on your behalf. That means they will bring their skills, knowledge, and experience to your case, which can help you get the amount of compensation you deserve.

An experienced personal injury lawyer also has in-depth knowledge regarding settlement negotiations. After filing your injury claim, the offender’s insurance representative may make a settlement offer in an attempt to settle the entire case out of court. Negotiating with an insurance company is challenging, and their representatives often have techniques to persuade the victim to accept the first offer even when it is not reasonable. For this reason, you need an experienced lawyer who can handle the negotiations on your behalf and ensure that you get a reasonable settlement offer.

Generally, having a good lawyer on your side means you’ll be making better decisions regarding your case. Unless you are a lawyer, it will be very challenging to file a personal injury claim because it is a complicated legal process. Even when the offending party owns up to their negligence and is willing to compensate you, it can be challenging to determine the amount of compensation you deserve unless you have a lawyer to help you get through this process.

Another benefit of working with an experienced personal injury lawyer is that they can help you get compensation faster. Unless you have a lawyer on your side, you will have to wait until you recover before you start the process of filing a personal injury claim. Unfortunately, that means it will take much longer to get compensation for the damages you suffered. This is why contacting an experienced lawyer immediately after you’ve been involved in an accident is recommended. This way, the lawyer can help you gather essential pieces of evidence, build a strong claim, and handle the entire process of seeking compensation on your behalf as you focus on getting better.

Finally, enlisting the services of an experienced personal injury lawyer will give you peace of mind. Depending on the nature and extent of your accident injuries, you may end up battling intense emotional trauma and post-traumatic stress. Having an experienced lawyer on your side means you will have enough time and peace of mind to recover while the lawyer focuses on the complicated aspects of a personal injury claim.

Keep in mind that this is possible if only you can hire an experienced lawyer who can handle your case successfully. But how do you find such a lawyer?

Step 2 – Know What To Look For In a Personal Lawyer

Reputation

Personal injury lawyers who are highly respected in a community and have a positive reputation usually prove better than lawyers with a less-than-stellar reputation. An excellent reputation means that a lawyer is dependable and can fully commit to a personal injury case. It is easier to find more information about a lawyer’s reputation in today’s highly digitized world by checking various review websites and testimonials written by their previous clients.

Proven history of high verdicts of settlements

If your case involves severe injuries, hiring a lawyer who can deliver an extensive settlement or verdict is essential. First, ask them the number of million-dollar settlements or verdicts they handled in the past. Then, find out whether the lawyer is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates. Keep in mind that the Million Dollar Advocates is a reputable organization of lawyers who have successfully tried or settled cases with a million dollars or higher. Remember, not every personal injury case is worth such an amount of money. Still, if you happen to have a case of that nature, it is essential to have an experienced lawyer on your side who can deliver desired results.

Availability

Suppose your injuries prevent you from visiting your lawyer’s office. In that case, it is recommended to hire a lawyer who can visit you in the hospital or at your home. Indeed, look for a lawyer or law firm with team members who are available 24 hours daily and seven days a week to handle your case. These are essential hallmarks of dedication on the part of the lawyer or law firm to the clients and an outstanding ‘infrastructure’ of operations.

Has sufficient resources to take your case seriously

You probably know that you need an experienced lawyer, and it’s time to look around. Do the lawyers look like they are successful? Do they have an office that looks like the lawyers know what they are doing? Does the lawyer own personal assets or line of credit necessary to prepare your case sufficiently?

The truth is that serious personal injury cases can be very expensive to prepare. The lawyer will need expert witnesses to back up the evidence provided to ensure that your case runs smoothly. For instance, many doctors must have their dispositions taken and may be required to appear in court, particularly when your case goes to trial. Other experts like biomechanics, economist, vocational rehabilitation specialists, accident reconstructionist, and life care planners may also be required. So, it is essential to hire a lawyer with enough resources to prepare your case adequately.

Years of experience

The reality is that many new lawyers lack experience and may not have insider secrets compared to personal injury lawyers who have practiced personal injury law for many years. But that doesn’t mean you cannot hire a new lawyer. For instance, a new lawyer who works in a reputable law firm that provides training and support of highly experienced lawyers can be a perfect hire because they have access to resources that could be helpful to your case.

Will allow to talk to his past clients if asked

A great lawyer will have no problem with allowing a prospect to interview or talk to past clients. Any lawyer worth his salt must have satisfied his clients and may not be ashamed to allow you to speak with them if you ask. However, suppose an accident lawyer tells you that you’re not allowed to consult with his past clients. In that case you should carefully consider that there is probably a big reason for that. Maybe the lawyer didn’t do a great job for those clients, and he doesn’t want you to find out. After all, feedback, reviews, and testimonials from the lawyer’s past clients could give you an idea of what to expect from the lawyer.

Has a history of taking cases to trial

Some lawyers who advertise themselves as personal injury lawyers have never seen the inside of the modern courtroom. Sure, they may have handled a personal injury case before, but they often pressure the client to settle for some pittance. Unfortunately, the reality is that most insurance providers are very aggressive. For example, suppose they realize that your lawyer has never taken a case to trial or is afraid of the courtroom. In that case, they may take advantage of this situation and make a ridiculously unreasonable offer.

The insurer may also make no or less effort to settle the case out of court. This is because they already know that your lawyer is shooting blanks, and he is more likely to fold his hand and pressure you to fold, too, particularly when the lawyer realizes that the insurance provider isn’t ready to budge. In case your lawyer is not willing to take the case to trial if necessary, the offender’s insurance provider will know it, and this could compromise your chances of getting reasonable compensation.

Disciplinary record

Lawyers who don’t keep their clients informed, miss deadlines, or act unethically are likely to find ethics-related complaints filed against them with the licensing body or state bar. If you are looking for a lawyer’s disciplinary record, you may want to check the licensing body’s or state bar’s official website. Find out if there are complaints, disbarments, or suspensions on the specific lawyer you are investigating.

Integrity. Finally, it’s important to choose a lawyer or firm that truly cares about you. Ultimately, the experience of suffering a personal injury is a deep and personal challenge, and you want a firm that truly cares about getting the best outcome for you and helping you on your way to recovery.

Step 3 – Check Testimonials and Reviews

Is there a better way to learn more about the services of a given law firm or lawyer than the words of the people they have represented in the past? Generally, clients are not required to leave feedback or testimonials for their lawyers, and most of them choose to do so because they probably appreciate the services they get. Nevertheless, checking these testimonies and watching testimonial videos can give you a clear idea of your likely experience with a given law firm or lawyer.

Suppose you want a lawyer who is all-business. In that case, you are likely to find out if a specific lawyer fits that category by simply checking feedback, reviews, or testimonials from previous clients. You will also learn more about how the lawyers made their previous clients feel throughout the entire legal process.

Take the time to read the reviews and testimonials from the lawyer’s previous clients because this will give you a feeling about how they may treat you. Similarly, check reviews from various websites to get different opinions from different clients about the lawyer or law firm you intend to hire. It is important not to let a few bad reviews turn you off a reliable law firm or lawyer.

Instead, focus on the big picture and determine what’s beyond the reviewers’ motive to write a negative review. For example, did the client seem like a person with unreasonable expectations, a disgruntled worker, or a competitor posting a fake review? It’s also important to pay attention to the lawyer’s or law firm’s response to the review. Find out if the law firm or lawyer cares about the feedback or opinions of their clients.

Step 4 – Interview Your Candidates

As mentioned earlier, you should talk to your family members and trusted friends or colleagues to get referrals, conduct online research, and use legal website directories to find reputable lawyers or law firms in your area. Now that you have a long list of options, carefully research each option and narrow down your search to a few qualified candidates. Next, contact these candidates and schedule an initial consultation session with them or their teams. During the initial meeting, make use of that opportunity to ask the lawyer or team various questions intended to understand their processes and whether or not they can handle your case successfully.

It is recommended to prepare a set of questions you intend to ask ahead of time. After all, you don’t want to get off track or forget any of the questions you wanted to ask during the conversation with a prospective lawyer. Indeed, you will want to discuss the incident that caused your injuries and how well the lawyer can help you seek compensation. Here are some of the top questions you will want to ask the lawyer.

  • Have you ever handled cases like mine? If so, were you successful?
  • Do you handle many types of cases, or do you specialize in personal injury law?
  • How long do I have to take legal action successfully?
  • What’s the timeline, or how long do cases like mine take to resolve?
  • Who will be collaborating with me, or how will my case be assigned?
  • How quickly do you or your office respond to emails or return calls to keep clients updated about their cases?
  • Do you feel I have a good chance of building a strong case and getting compensated?
  • What are the fee arrangements for helping with this type of case?

To get the best possible answers from the lawyer or his team, please provide as many details about your issue as possible. It would be best if you gather information and relevant documentation before the initial meeting. This way, you will be better positioned to provide as much information as possible about the accident and your injuries.

Whenever possible, you should gather all crucial documents and details available. For instance, you must acquire information about the witnesses to the accident, the police report, photographs of the accident scene, medical records, and other pieces of information that could give your prospective lawyer a clear picture of your case. This will ensure that the interview session or initial conversation with the lawyer is productive.

Taking the time to talk to the lawyer will give you a feeling for whether they will be a good fit for your case. Please pay attention to how the lawyer or their representative handles the entire meeting during this initial conversation. Did they rush you off the phone or skip over important aspects of your case? These issues may signal what you should expect if you hire that lawyer or law firm.

Keep in mind that hiring the right lawyer is a personal choice and plays a crucial role in your personal injury claim. Therefore, ensure that the initial consultation is free and that you are under no obligation to hire the law firm or lawyer you interview.

Step 5 – Understand the Cost Before Making a Decision

Most victims of accidents are hesitant to hire a personal injury lawyer because of the potential costs associated with legal representation. After all, you have probably heard about law firms that charge expensive hourly rates for phone calls. Also, you don’t want to worry about financial resources every time you spend a few minutes with your lawyer on the phone with a question regarding your personal injury claim. So instead, find a law firm or lawyer who can meet your needs with a reasonable fee structure.

Some fee arrangements or structures can be very confusing. For this reason, you should always ask questions until you understand what the law firm or lawyer expects from you in terms of fees. Also, be sure to hire a lawyer whose fee arrangement carefully fits in your current financial situation (following the event that caused your injuries). The last thing you want is additional financial stress.

At Grillo Law, the initial consultation session is the best time to get more information about our billing structure and potential legal expenses that may come up. It’s recommended to take on law firms with a great fee structure. For instance, Grillo Law firm will require nothing unless the firm recovers money for you. Besides, our initial consultation is free.

In case you are on a budget and intend to hire cost-effective legal representation services. It is recommended to look for a law firm that takes personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis. This fee arrangement means that the client isn’t required to pay unless the lawyer or law firm succeeds in securing the compensation you are entitled to. So, you will pay nothing unless your case reaches a successful resolution.

When you finally get your compensation, part of that payment will cover your lawyer’s costs and fees. Your contingency fee contract must clearly state in writing the amount of payment that will pay your lawyer. Only sign the contract if you are comfortable with that amount.

Note that contingency fees arrangement benefits both you and your lawyer. You no longer need to worry about whether you can afford the lawyer. Besides, you can successfully pursue your personal injury claim even when you don’t have the cash to do so, and your lawyer will get paid once you get paid. That means your interests and your lawyer’s interests are aligned.

Step 6 – Hire the Best Law Firm for You

Suppose you enjoyed your initial conversation with the first law firm or lawyer and feel comfortable with the experience, credentials, and demeanor of their teams. In that case, you would be confident that they are an excellent match for your case. That means the lawyer has addressed your concerns and answered all your questions satisfactorily. Therefore, it is okay to go ahead and sign a contract with them.

If you still have lingering concerns or questions, it is best to talk to a supervisor or speak directly to one of the top lawyers on the team. If you don’t move forward to hire the lawyer or law firm after the initial conversations, it is recommended to keep taking notes and keeping your notebook handy. It would be best if you also wrote down any concerns or questions that came up during the discussion. You never know; you may want to follow up later.

Even when you don’t get a perfect experience during the initial conversation, keep in mind that conversations can get off track, and lawyers, just like any other person, may not offer the details you seek for every question. This does not mean that they do not care about your case or are not knowledgeable. Sometimes it can be an oversight.

The choice is up to you. If you feel that you are strongly attracted to a certain law firm or lawyer, either after the initial conversion or a second one, trust your instincts and research. Then, move forward and hire them.

Once you have made the decision to hire a given lawyer or law firm, it is time to sign the contract. This agreement must clearly state the terms of legal representation and the fees or fee structure discussed during the initial consultation. Carefully read the contract. Keep in mind that you are allowed to ask questions about the terms of the contract whenever possible.

As any legal professional will tell you – never sign a legally binding document that you are uncomfortable with or don’t understand. Once you sign the agreement, your personal injury lawyer and his or her team can start working on your case. The lawyer will review the details of your personal injury case, gather the right information, and build a strong case. Note that the lawyer will require your full cooperation to ensure your case runs smoothly and that you avoid mistakes that could derail your claim.

Sound Legal Advice

It is important you consult with your lawyer before signing on the dotted lines. It is through the initial consultation that a lawyer will go through important documents including police reports, correspondences with your insurer, medical reports, and other records and advise you on the merits of your case, and the appropriate legal strategy to take.

Through the initial consultation, you will get an opportunity to ask important questions on the case to better understand your legal options. At Grillo Law, our initial consultation is FREE and we will answer all the questions that you may have.

Ethical Practice

At Grillo Law, we do not promise more than we can deliver. We will give you realistic possible outcomes when it comes to compensation and timelines and advise you on the strengths and weaknesses of your case so you can make an informed decision. We will always work hard in your corner to help you secure a favourable outcome.

A Strong Team

One advantage of going to a law firm is that your case is handled by a team, not just an individual representative. At Grillo Law, we have a large team of associates and paralegals working on your team to help with all aspects of litigation including research, filing motions, and obtaining medical records and evidence. We are available around the clock to do all it takes to prove your claim. As an established law firm, we have the resources necessary to win your case, have a strong presence in the judicial scene and work with leading investigators, medical experts and other professionals.

At Grillo Law we have over 30 years helping clients like you. Call today for a free consultation.

 

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