If you’ve been a victim of personal injury, your attorney could be the difference between no compensation and a high payout.
It’s an issue confronting thousands of Americans when you consider the statistics.
The National Center for Health Statistics, a department within the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, records that around 31 million people are injured across the United States every year and requiring medical treatment. Of these, some 2 million are severe enough to require some form of hospitalization.
And over 160,000 of these injuries are fatal.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that there are 3 million injuries from car accidents (and 40,000 fatalities).
Construction industry injuries account for some 300,000 personal injuries per year, as well as 1,000 deaths.
Finally, medical malpractice is believed to be behind the deaths of some 98,000 people each year.
This shows just how many accidental injuries and deaths actually occur and liability is often disputes, making the employment of a competent personal injury lawyer essential.
For that reason, you should choose your attorney with care. When searching for legal representation, asking the following questions could help you make the right decision.
1. What Areas of Law Are Your Specialty?
The law is a broad topic, and each niche has its own complexities. You wouldn’t hire a general practitioner to perform open-heart surgery, so why would you hire a criminal lawyer to handle a personal injury case? Only work with a lawyer if they specialize in cases similar to yours.
2. Have You Worked Cases Like Mine?
Even if a lawyer specializes in personal injury claims, they might not have experience with certain types of personal injury. For instance, they may only handle premises liability cases. Look for a lawyer who has represented clients in your specific type of case.
3. Who Else Will Work on My Case?
Despite what you’ve heard, a personal injury lawyer will not be the only one to handle your case. Rather, a team of non-lawyers will also work on your claim. Before you choose a lawyer, find out who will be on your team. Don’t be afraid to ask for credentials.
4. How Do Your Fees Work?
Most personal injury lawyers don’t charge an up-front fee for their services. Instead, they will take a percentage of your total settlement.
That said, you could encounter an attorney who charges by the hour. This could be expensive and cost you more than it’s worth. The average per capita income in 2017 for Oxnard residents was $22,269. Most people can’t afford high retainers and expensive hourly fees. Be sure to ask how a law firm charges, and get the specifics.
5. How Long Will It Take to Resolve My Case?
Without seeing the future, a lawyer can not tell you how long it will take to conclude your case. But they should be able to estimate the time needed to reach a resolution. If the estimate seems too long or short, you may want a second opinion.
6. Are You Willing to Go to Trial?
An inexperienced firm may only be willing to resolve your case with a settlement. However, there are times when a settlement isn’t the best option. You might need to go to court to get the money you deserve. To ensure a law firm is prepared for trial, ask them how frequently they go to court.
7. What Else Can I Do to Improve My Case?
An aggressive lawyer will be able to tell you how to improve your chances at a positive outcome. For instance, they might tell you to see a different doctor or to be more diligent in your record-keeping.
8. Will You Put My Best Interest First?
Unfortunately, some lawyers put their own wants and needs before their clients. Instead of doing what you want, they may do what’s best for them. Ask an attorney if they are willing to do what you want when it comes to accepting a settlement.
9. Have You Been Disciplined?
Personal injury lawyers are held to high standards. When an attorney doesn’t adhere to those standards, they face disciplinary measures. You should find out if a lawyer has been disciplined and why the action occurred. If it makes you concerned about your case, you should search for a different lawyer.
10. Do You Have References?
No attorney will have a 100% success rate. However, a qualified lawyer will have had enough success to have references. Ask the lawyer for a reference list and call one or two of the references.
Law Firm Source:
King Law Firm. Kenneth King is a personal injury attorney, Kenneth King is ready to help you those requiring asistance