A personal injury attorney can ease your burdens after an accident by handling the legal aspects of your case and negotiating for fair compensation. Your attorney should be someone you can trust and are comfortable with, as you’ll likely work closely with them throughout your case. Asking the right questions can help you understand your case better and allow you to determine if your chosen attorney is a good fit. Here are some questions to ask before settling on the lawyer you want to represent you:
Have You Handled Cases Like Mine Before?
Asking this question will help you determine the likelihood of achieving the results you want from your case. Attorneys specializing in personal injury are better positioned to handle your case as they understand the intricacies of personal injury law. A personal injury attorney who has dealt with cases similar to yours will know specific laws and precedents that apply. If you’re a slip-and-fall victim, an attorney who has tackled such cases before may represent you better. They’ll know which questions to ask and the evidence to collect to strengthen your case.
How Much Is My Case Worth?
This question can help you gauge an attorney’s expertise and determine realistic outcomes for your case. While no attorney can tell you the exact amount to expect as compensation, they can give you a ballpark estimate after assessing your claim. A reliable attorney will likely base the ballpark amount on economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages are easy to calculate as they’re directly connected to a personal injury. They include medical expenses, lost wages, and property damage.
Non-economic damages are intangible harms like emotional and mental pain and suffering. It’s normal for your attorney’s estimate to change as your case progresses, as you may need further treatment or more time off work. A reliable attorney will likely ask you to keep them updated on changes that occur to facilitate negotiations.
How Long Will It Take to Resolve This Case?
As with the compensation estimate, your attorney may be unable to give you an exact timeline for your case. They can estimate a time frame to help you plan your life and manage your expectations. A reliable attorney will only provide a time frame after assessing the specifics of your case. Your recovery timeline and the likelihood of reaching an agreement with the at-fault party’s insurance company can determine how long a case takes. Experienced attorneys may give general estimates based on how long it’s taken them to resolve similar cases in the past.
What Is My Role in the Case?
You may need to play an active role in your case to improve your chances of success. Understanding your responsibilities can make work easier for your attorney and streamline your claim. Your attorney may need you to talk to investigators, seek medical opinions from multiple doctors, provide copies of injury-related bills, and keep them updated on changes in your life because of your injuries. You may also need to involve your partner if there’s a loss of consortium. In such cases, your partner will need to work with your attorney to prove a connection between your injuries and the loss of consortium.
What Are Your Fees?
Understanding your attorney’s fees can prevent conflicts. Some lawyers charge by the hour, whereas others charge clients on a contingency basis. A contingency fee arrangement allows you to pay your lawyer when you receive compensation. Review your lawyer’s preferred payment arrangement and fees before they get started on your case. This can help you determine if they fit your budget.
Hire the Right Personal Injury Attorney
An attorney’s expertise can determine your personal injury case’s outcome. The more skilled your personal injury attorney is, the better your chances of receiving fair compensation. The questions discussed here can help determine if your attorney is the right fit for your case. They can also help you understand your responsibilities, reducing the risk of conflicts with your lawyer.