Finding a personal injury attorney is not something you do every day, so, it’s bound to be a challenge. This is made even worse with the many options available in the market, each promising high-quality representation. The question now becomes, how do you find the right one for your needs?
To help answer that question, we spoke to one lawyer from Johnston Law Firm, P.C. According to him, here are the five tips to find the right personal injury attorney:
Go for experience
You might not know this, but lawyers specialize in different areas –criminal, family, personal injury, employment and so on. So, before you hire one, you want to establish whether they specialize in your area of interest (which is a personal injury) and if they have the necessary experience to represent a case of your magnitude. Find out whether they have represented clients with cases similar to yours, and their success rates. Also, ask about the number of years they have been in practice. Don’t forget to check their certifications the kinds of law bodies that they are an affiliate too. These pointers will help you eliminate under-qualified candidates.
Schedule the first meeting
Both experience and background are critical, but there are other things that you’ll need to consider to make a smarter selection. These are things that you can’t make out from a phone call – like the lawyer’s personality, enthusiasm for your case, communication and so on. Going to an initial consultation with the personal injury lawyer will help you determine whether you like the lawyer, their personality, communication style and so on. Remember, the lawyer will be your voice. So, it’s only best if the two of you can relate well.
Ask the right questions
If you know the right types of questions to ask, you will get the quality answers that will help you determine whether the personal injury lawyer is a good fit or not. It’s more of garbage in, garbage out case. Arm yourself with questions about how they’ll handle your case and their processes — for instance, their fees and payment plans, the type of cases they handle, the anticipated results (based on their experience) and the duration of the case (again, based on the past cases).
Double check who will work on your case
It is possible to hire one attorney and have another one represent. Well, not because you want it, but because the attorney you hired delegated the job to another lawyer. Knowing, right from the onset, who will represent you will help clear future misunderstandings – or even help you eliminate them from the list of potential attorneys if you aren’t comfortable.
Follow up research
Don’t stop your research after the first meeting; instead, proceed with your fact finding for all attorneys in your list before making the final decision. Make use of the law resources like Avvo.com, Martindale-Hubbel and so on that lets you see the lawyer ratings, qualifications, years of practices among other things. You can also read reviews and customer testimonials for an account of what to expect working with the lawyer in question.