If you find yourself the victim of injury through no fault of your own, most people know you should consider contacting a law firm specializing in personal injury claims. However, choosing the right attorney can often feel quite intimidating with so many firms making fantastic claims of their success rates and no-win, no-fee deals.
Asking a few simple questions will put you in a better position to select which law practice to use. As with all areas of life, some lawyers are better than others, so you must choose an attorney with the relevant experience and skills to achieve the best result from your claim. As a basic minimum, you should make sure you only work with a lawyer that has specialist knowledge of personal injury claims and how they work.
Ask to see evidence of previous successful personal injury claims
One of the best ways to assess an attorney’s skill at winning claims is by looking at their track record. Don’t be afraid to ask to see details of a prospective lawyer’s previous history with claims to check they know as much as they claim. Most countries now allow legal firms to discuss previous cases to at least some level so check how many the firm has contested and, more importantly, how many they’ve won. Search online for sites like https://www.brownandcrouppen.com/ which actively disclose previous results.
Qualify who will be working on your case
It’s not uncommon for senior partners in a firm to handle initial inquiries then pass your case to a junior attorney or lower manager. Check to make sure who will be handling your claim and who will be representing you in court.
Check how the attorney charges for their services
When it comes to personal injury, most attorneys will work on a contingency basis (i.e. no win, no fee – ‘contingent’ on you winning). Nonetheless, you should be sure to clarify the firm’s costs before giving them your case. Also, bear in mind that if your lawyer proposes charging on an hourly basis, you can build up a very big bill, very quickly. Always ask your lawyer to fully detail how they charge and the expected fees in your case for their services.
Ask the expected time to resolve your case
Unfortunately, there are no hard and fast rules when it comes to legal proceedings – particularly those involving personal injury – but your attorney should be able to give you at least a rough idea based on previous work, similar to yours. You should also remember the longer a case takes to resolve, the higher your fees are likely to be (depending on how the firm charges).
Ask what percentage of cases your attorney takes to trial
Insurance companies normally make the payments in personal injury cases and will often try to settle out of court by offering far lower amounts than you might get if a case goes to trial. If your proposed attorney rarely goes to court, it can be a sign they’re more interested in making a quick buck than putting in the effort to reach a higher settlement.
Is the attorney able to provide references?
Most countries now allow lawyers to ask for references from their clients – and disclose them as a back up to their expertise. There is no better confirmation of a lawyer’s skills and ability to handle cases than personal testimonials from previous clients. Ask the law firm if they’re able to provide previous references or recommendations. If not, question why.