When you have been injured in an accident, the last thing you need to worry about is whether or not your attorney will fight hard enough on your behalf to get you the compensation you deserve. Here are five steps to follow when choosing a personal injury attorney who will truly fight for you and help you win your case.
1) Figure out what you need
If you’ve just been injured in an accident, it can be tempting to rush out and find yourself an attorney. However, figuring out what your case is worth—and how much you stand to lose from settlement or trial—is vital before hiring legal counsel.
Hiring an attorney who won’t take you on as a client, or who isn’t willing to put in the time or effort necessary for your specific case, can be more harmful than good.
2) Interview prospective lawyers
After you’ve identified your target market and chosen a niche, it’s time to find a personal injury attorney. Interviewing multiple lawyers will give you an idea of who might be right for your case.
When you visit prospective attorneys, make sure they don’t try and sell their services by promising that they can get you thousands of dollars in compensation.
3) Hire your lawyer
The best way to choose an attorney is by asking around and getting referrals. If you’re looking for someone with experience handling similar situations, friends and family are good sources of information.
The Internet can also be useful; you can research local attorneys online and read reviews left by previous clients. Once you’ve compiled a list of possible candidates, you should call them up or set up in-person meetings so that you can get to know each other better.
4) Follow up with your attorney
After your attorney has agreed to take your case, one of his or her first tasks will be to prepare a retainer agreement. The agreement spells out who will get paid and when, and specifies what legal services you’re hiring him or her for.
Your lawyer is not required by law to give you a written retainer agreement, but if he or she doesn’t do so after agreeing to represent you, it may be cause for concern.
5) Look for resolution
Choose an attorney who specializes in your kind of accident. It’s true that anyone can file a lawsuit, but it’s also true that some injuries call for certain types of representation.
If you were hurt in an automobile accident, don’t hire someone who only does slip-and-fall cases or qui tam whistleblower suits. A personal injury attorney with experience representing victims like you is not only more likely to succeed in court but will also understand your needs.