Personal injuries are serious matters; therefore, you should strive when deciding who you’ll work with for legal representation.
Indeed, “shopping around” until they find the perfect fit is a common practice among accident victims. You ought to do an initial interview with your attorney prior to deciding to work with them on a professional basis. Make yourself confident that everything will go well for you—from case assessment to settlement award.
We’ve compiled a series of the best hard-hitting questions you’d ask an attorney if you were in that position. The answers to these questions should either give you peace of mind — you’re in good hands, or let you run to another attorney and legal practice entirely.
Let’s ask the following questions to them.
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- For What Services Do You Charge?
- How Long Have You Practiced Personal Injury Law?
- Have You Handled Similar Personal Injury Cases Before? If yes, Which Ones Went To Trial?
- What Problems or Difficulties Do You See in My Case?
- How Will You Inform Me on My Case’s Progress?
- Can I See Any References or Testimonials from Your Previous Clients?
- If I Fail to Succeed, What Happens? Will Any Case-Related Expenses Be My Responsibility?
- How Much Time Can You Invest in My Case? How Much Bandwidth Do You Have Now?
- What’s the Worth of My Personal Injury Case?
For What Services Do You Charge?
The majority of injury attorneys handle cases on a contingent fee basis. It means you won’t have to spend anything until your personal injury lawsuit results in financial damages.
In a contingency fee agreement, you do not pay any legal fees beforehand. Instead, upon the settlement of your case, your personal injury lawyer will take an agreed-upon percentage of the money you are awarded.
If you want to get the best personal injury settlement, your personal injury attorney will take an agreed-upon percentage of the money you are awarded. Make sure you find out what that percentage is. It will often fall between 20% and 40%.
How Long Have You Practiced Personal Injury Law?
One of your primary concerns should be hiring an experienced attorney with several years of expertise in dealing with cases just like yours. You can think of your attorney’s legal knowledge and experience in the same way you do of your doctor’s.
If something is wrong with your foot, for example, you will probably consult a podiatrist rather than your local general physician. Considering a specialist is the superior choice to provide you with the best service, even though a generalist surely has a basic understanding of what ails you.
When speaking with a Las Vegas personal injury lawyer, be straightforward. Inquire about their years of experience with cases similar to yours, including personal injuries or malpractice. And while you’re on the subject, inquire about their success rate.
Have You Handled Similar Personal Injury Cases Before? If yes, Which Ones Went To Trial?
A lawyer isn’t always a superstar just because they have worked on cases similar to yours previously. Multiple times, ideally! Let’s say an attorney can present you with a list of similar case results.
If so, you can be sure they’re competent when it comes to dealing with complex legal matters and are aware of the kinds of settlements they have successfully secured on behalf of previous clients. Most cases are resolved before they go to trial. Still, you should ensure that your attorney has adequate jury trial expertise if the case proceeds to court.
A lot of lay people never consider asking this question. There’s a widespread misconception that all attorneys are capable of trying cases in court. Obviously, it is untrue. So, when you ask them questions, find out whether they are eligible for a lawsuit in court.
What Problems or Difficulties Do You See in My Case?
Every personal injury claim has its own set of concerns and difficulties. A competent lawyer would be able to point things out to you easily. Not only do they point out problems in your case, but they go above and beyond to highlight them!
If the attorney informs you that your case will be smooth sailing with no complications, this should raise a severe red flag. Nothing in life is ever simple or easy. History of the 5 types of cases a personal injury lawyer can help you with should be honest with you about the complexity of the legal system.
In short, a qualified personal injury attorney will be upfront with you about the concerns and obstacles in your case before proposing a viable solution.
How Will You Inform Me on My Case’s Progress?
Is there someone who can take your calls? The lawyer? A secretary or a paralegal? Communication is the foundation of any relationship and a necessary component of a personal injury case.
Some clients prefer to be involved at every stage of the process, while others are content with getting occasional updates on the progress of their cases. No matter what you prefer, you should consult with your attorney about your role in the process and what is expected of you.
You should inquire about what the working relationship would entail, regardless of your preference for taking a more hands-on approach, wanting regular meetings and phone conversations, or standing by and watching things happen.
Can I See Any References or Testimonials from Your Previous Clients?
Just as you’d like to see proof of previous results and case relevance, you could be curious to learn about previous clients’ experiences. The majority of personal injury attorneys will have client testimonials publicly available on their law firm’s official website, but if they don’t, you must ask.
A lot of seasoned attorneys also get referrals from other lawyers in different fields. When we talk about how to find a legal representative, be sure you choose someone who people love dealing with.
You may be experiencing physical and emotional distress, so selecting someone with an adequate bedside manner might make all the difference. Inquire about testimonials, but you should also think about requesting to talk with a previous client.
If I Fail to Succeed, What Happens? Will Any Case-Related Expenses Be My Responsibility?
This may be among the most essential questions to ask from prospective attorneys because the answer may affect your financial livelihood—listen up!
Every lawsuit incurs litigation costs (especially those tried in a court). The longer your case lasts, the higher these charges may be. When you contact a personal injury attorney, inquire about their policy on these expenses.
Whether you win or lose, you will pay for case filing fees, medical record retrieval fees, and other necessary clerical activities to proceed with your case. Depending on the result, some lawyers will charge you for these costs, while others won’t. So, whether you win or lose, be sure to inquire about your attorney’s out-of-pocket cost policy.
How Much Time Can You Invest in My Case? How Much Bandwidth Do You Have Now?
If you’ve suffered a serious injury, you’ll want to ensure that your legal representative gives your case the attention and care it deserves.
In some cases, your initial appointment will be with a senior attorney from your local personal injury company. Even if they were your first point of contact, this doesn’t mean that they will be the ones managing your case the most closely.
When you ask questions, figure out who will handle your case. Is it a senior attorney, or will associates with less experience do the majority of the work? In the event of the latter, enquire about their qualifications, their experience, and method of supervision. Ultimately, you’ll feel confident and at ease knowing that the right attorney is working on the right case—your case.
What’s the Worth of My Personal Injury Case?
As a trial attorney, I can say that estimating the worth of any of my clients’ cases is a challenging task. You can see every case is different. Since no two are the same, there is no such thing as an accurate formula or settlement fee calculator.
However, after your attorney gets more involved in your case, they can provide you with an estimate of that range. You should also be aware that your attorney’s skill in litigating cases and negotiating settlements with insurance companies can have an impact on your case value.
If your attorney is ready and willing to pursue your case in court, you may be confident that they will fight for the best possible compensation in your settlement offer. On the other hand, you can anticipate that your lawyer will choose to settle your case at a reduced cost if they do the same and never take cases to court.
What Happens Once My Case Went to Court? Will the Fees Be Going to Change? Will You Try My Case on Your Own?
Insurance firms will aim to provide you with the least amount of financial compensation possible, anticipating you will take the money and run. It is in everyone’s best interests to settle the case, but if the insurance company refuses to settle or you don’t agree with the settlement amount offered, your case may be taken to court.
Your attorney should be competent in fighting for the maximum injury compensation for your case. They should be able to negotiate with insurance adjusters to reach a fair settlement properly. If your case is taken to court, you’ll want to be sure your attorney can handle it.
If the case proceeds to court, the original contingency fee may increase. Remember to ask for clarification on this topic.