Accident attorneys are available to help you right a wrong that wasn’t your fault, from car accidents to malpractice, acting on your behalf to get you what you deserve.
When you’ve suffered an accident, one of the hardest decisions you have to make is choosing the right accident attorney for your needs. There are typically hundreds of lawyers to choose from in any given area, so how do you go about hiring your local car accident attorney? Playing the field to find the perfect one can be time-consuming, so we’ve compiled some tips to help you through the process.
Speak to People You Trust
Unfortunately, accidents are common, with over 17,000 car collisions taking place each day in the US, this means that it’s very likely that you know someone who has already had to deal with the process of finding an accident lawyer. If you can speak to people you trust and ask their advice, it will help you to get recommendations and also make the process more easy-going. Testimonials count for a lot when it comes to finding an attorney and there are a number of factors that can help you make a calculated decision. If you can speak to people who have dealt with lawyers first-hand before you contact businesses, you will have an idea of their experiences and know what to expect before you begin.
Know What You’re Looking For
There are many lawyers available to help you with your accident so it’s important to have a list of criteria that your chosen attorney needs to have to help you narrow down your search. Perhaps location is key and you want a lawyer who is close by, or maybe you want someone with a well-known reputation or a smaller firm that can focus on your case more closely.
‘Accident’ is a vague and populated area of the law, finding an attorney that’s expertise lies with your specific case should be a top priority. The specific conditions of your case matter, so the attorney you choose should have the experience that matches those conditions. Some lawyers have more experience with motorcycle accidents, for example, so if your case involves this, you would be wise to find a lawyer with this experience. By going to a lawyer that has handled cases like yours, you’ll ensure that they have the skills to know what to do at each stage, but you’ll also guarantee that a settlement agreement will be in place without the need for a trial.
Note Their Reputation
Reputation is important, not just because of the expertise and knowledge that a highly-regarded attorney will have, but because you can ensure your case is resolved as efficiently as possible. You can rest assured that your lawyer has a reputation that will scare the other side and make them want to settle quickly without the need to go to court. But, courtroom experience is a must when assessing which attorney to hire, as if settling doesn’t go to plan, a court battle could be on the cards. With court experience comes with a better chance of winning as it is just as much about their experience than it is about legal skill, they come hand in hand. Your attorney can’t be afraid to fight your corner in the courtroom as well as in a settlement meeting, so keep this in mind when hiring as it’s smart to hope for the best but plan for the worst.
Compare Different Lawyers
Once you’ve narrowed down your search, it’s a good idea to pick up the phone and actually interview each of your potential candidates for the position. It will help you decide on who will be the best fit for you, as you may find that some lawyers don’t communicate well or that you don’t like their personality. Before you contact them, write out a list of the questions that are most important to you so you can make a note of their responses and determine the attorney that you’ll be most comfortable with.
Another important factor that can determine the attorney you hire will be their fee. A large portion of lawyers that work under the umbrella of accidents or personal injuries will work on a contingency fee basis, but it is best to double-check that this is the case to avoid any nasty surprises. A contingency fee agreement refers to a payment scheme in which they only get paid if they secure you compensation and then take a percentage of that sum as opposed to charging you separately. Not only does this payment agreement give an attorney extra incentive to fight for your case, but prevents you from spending large amounts on legal fees, which can include…
- Court filing fees
- Witness fees
- Administration fees
- Billable hours/information gathering