If you have been harmed in an accident because of another person’s reckless, wrongful, or negligent actions, you should not have to deal with the devastating consequences that result on your own. Instead, you deserve justice for the harm you sustained and compensation for the losses you endured. Fortunately, with an experienced injury accident attorney on your side, you will not have to take on this legal fight alone.
However, finding the right lawyer for your case is often not as easy as many people tend to think it will be. That is why to help you with this process, we have prepared the following article. In it, we will explore ways that can help you find the experienced and knowledgeable injury accident lawyer you need to take on your case.
What Do Personal Injury Lawyers Do Exactly?
A personal injury attorney is a civil lawyer that primarily handles intentional and negligence tort cases and is typically hired to recover money from one person on behalf of another. In other words, these lawyers help people that have been psychologically or physically injured in an accident due to another person’s wrongdoings by fighting for their rights and the compensation and justice they deserve.
Once retained, these attorneys can:
- Go over your case in detail, determine if you have a viable claim, and help you figure out the legal options you can pursue.
- Answer all the questions and concerns you have about your case and provide you with the legal help you need during this challenging time.
- Thoroughly investigate your personal injury accident and secure the evidence required to show what happened and who was at fault.
- Ensure that legal motions and filings are properly prepared and filed with the correct court before time runs out.
- Hold all those responsible for your accident accountable for the harm and losses you endured.
- Obtain experts such as accident reconstructionists, financial specialists, doctors, and engineers to validate your claim.
- Handle all the discussions and negotiations with the defense team and the insurance company and pursue a just settlement offer on your behalf.
- Take your case to trial if the other side is unwilling to settle for a fair amount, and fight for the maximum compensation you need.
However, before you can hire one of these experienced and knowledgeable personal injury attorneys to provide you with the legal help you need, you first need to find the right attorney for your case.
How Do You Find a Personal Injury Accident Attorney to Take on Your Legal Claim?
Thankfully, when it comes to finding an injury accident lawyer, there are plenty of resources available to help you find the right attorney. For instance, consider the following:
#1. Family, Friends, and Acquaintances
One of the most common ways to find a personal injury accident attorney is to ask around. Check with your friends, family, and even your coworkers if a lawyer ever represented them in a personal injury case. Through these individuals, you will often be able to gather some names of potential lawyers you can contact and get information regarding the attorney’s demeanor, their experience, and whether they may be the right choice for you.
However, before you make your decision solely on a friend’s recommendation, you still want to meet with these lawyers and decide for yourself if they are the proper fit for you and your case. Remember, everyone has preferences, so what worked for one person may not work for you. That is why it is always in your best interest to see for yourself if you are comfortable entering into a working relationship with an attorney.
#2. Local Referral Services
Many places have referral services that people can use to find a lawyer to help with their case. These services will often recommend lawyers in the area to evaluate your situation, and some of these services may even cater to specific groups with unique characteristics such as individuals with a disability, the elderly, or immigrants. In addition, bar associations can also provide legal referrals according to a specific area of law. This can help individuals find legal help within the concentration they need and hire a lawyer with the experience they are looking for.
#3. Legal Professionals You Already Know
In some instances, you may already know an attorney because they have already represented you in a separate legal matter, or you know them personally. Although it may seem like an obvious choice to hire these lawyers to work on your personal injury case, you need to realize that not all attorneys work on personal injury claims or have the experience to handle them.
However, if this is the case, you can still ask them if they know of another attorney that can help with your claim. Lawyers commonly refer cases to other lawyers and often know of an attorney that handles plaintiffs’ personal injury claims. Yet, as was the situation with family and friend referrals, do not simply take the recommendation and presume it is the best choice for you. Instead, make sure you meet with these potential lawyers and decide for yourself.
#4. Martindale-Hubbell Legal Directory
Martindale-Hubbell publishes a Law Directory that offers information regarding lawyers and law firms, including their background and experience. It also provides an online lawyer locator service that contains a database of one million lawyers and law firms in 160 countries.
#5. Online Resources
One of the great things about technology today is that if you are looking for a lawyer, you can head to the internet and search for lawyers in your area. You can have a list of personal injury lawyers that can help with your case in seconds. Yet, just because this is an easier way to find an attorney, it does not mean that the lawyers that come up in your search history are right for your case.
A Google search will not verify that these attorneys have the experience needed to take on your case or that the lawyer’s personality fits what you are looking for. These search results simply provide you with a list of lawyers that you can choose from. Fortunately, because most of these attorneys offer individuals a free consultation, once you have compiled a list of attorneys in the area, you can start reaching out to them and scheduling a meeting to discuss your case.
Things to Consider When Meeting with Prospective Personal Injury Lawyers
Once you get the names of several potential personal injury attorney prospects, the next thing you should do is to talk with each of these lawyers personally. They can answer your questions, which can help you decide whom you want to hire. Yet, before you head into your initial consultation, you may want to consider the following factors that can affect your decision:
#1. The Personal Injury Attorney’s Communication Skills and Promptness
When looking for a personal injury attorney, evaluate their communication skills and how long it takes them to get back to you. This is important since there is nothing more aggravating and worrisome than hiring an attorney and not hearing back from them for weeks or months at a time. That is why when you talk to these lawyers, you want to confirm with them their availability, how often you will be receiving case updates regarding your claim, and if you can reach out to them through email or phone if you have a question or concern about your case.
In addition, you also want to make sure that these attorneys can communicate with you in a way you understand. For instance, are they using clear and straightforward language to respond to your questions, or are they constantly using complicated legal jargon? Remember, even if a lawyer seems friendly, it does not mean they are adept at communicating properly about your case. However, if you hire an attorney with communication problems, it can lead to delays and problems for you down the road.
#2. The Personal Injury Attorney’s Personality
A lawyer may be the best in the business, but if their personality is not what you expect, they may not be the best person for the job. Plus, if these attorneys leave you feeling uncomfortable after meeting with them, you should also consider looking elsewhere, as this uneasiness may prevent you from achieving the attorney relationship that you want.
At the end of the day, you want to have an attorney on your team that you can trust and rely on. That is why trust your instincts and keep looking if your gut tells you that an attorney is not a good fit.
#3. The Personal Injury Attorney’s Costs
Most personal injury attorneys will work on a contingency fee basis, which means they will not get paid unless they win your case and recover financial compensation on your behalf. Generally, the lawyer will receive a percentage of the winnings under this agreement. However, before you assume that every lawyer works on a contingency fee basis or will collect a standard percentage amount, you will want to first verify their fees before hiring them. Additionally, you will want to check if the percentage they will collect will go up if the case heads to trial.
#4. The Personal Injury Attorney’s Experience
When meeting with a personal injury attorney for the first time, you want to find out everything you can about them, including:
- How long have they been practicing law?
- Whether they handle personal injury cases exclusively?
- Whether they have experience dealing with insurance companies?
- Do they have a history of high verdicts and settlements?
- Do they have experience taking personal injury cases to trial?
- What is their success record inside and outside the courtroom?
- Do they have access to experts that can help with your case?
These types of questions can give you a better understanding of the lawyer’s background and whether they have the skills and knowledge to take on your case.
Red Flags to Watch Out For When Choosing a Personal Injury Attorney
Choosing a personal injury lawyer after an accident can be challenging, especially since there is so much at stake for those harmed in an accident. Yet, even though most of these lawyers are there to help their clients, not every legal professional will give a legal case the best odds of succeeding.
Consequently, other than paying attention to a lawyer’s skills, experience, and record, you should also consider paying attention to the following red flags:
- Does the lawyer have poor client reviews? Will they provide you with a list of referrals you can contact?
- Does the lawyer lack the reputation for heading to court and trying cases?
- Does the lawyer claim they will get you the results you want without even discussing your case?
- Does the lawyer not have their fee agreement in writing?
- Does the lawyer appear to be guessing on how they will handle your case?
Injured in an Accident? Get the Legal Help You Need Today
Every personal injury case is different, with unique facts and circumstances. As a result, when you want a personal injury attorney to take your case, you want more than just a lawyer with skills, experience, and resources. You also want an attorney that aligns themselves with you and is ready and willing to take an individual approach to represent you.
For these reasons, if a personal injury accident injured you or a loved one, do not wait any longer to get the legal help you need. Instead, contact an experienced injury accident attorney today for your free case consultation and determine whether they are right for you.