Getting injured in an accident is a miserable experience. Don’t be a victim twice by hiring the wrong lawyer. Here are some tips to safely navigate the process.
Read the testimonials in her advertising. Do they sound authentic? Or is she attempting to create an unrealistic picture.
Is the lawyer certified in personal injury in the state where he practices. Many states don’t have certification but for those who do it is an opportunity for a lawyer to prove special expertise in his chosen field.
3. Limited Number of Practice Areas
Go with a lawyer who works exclusively in personal injury or who has at most two areas of practice.
4. Published Works
Has the lawyer published books or articles on personal injury subjects? It takes work to research and write a technical article on injury law. And it helps a lawyer establish expertise in a chosen area.
5. Speaking Engagements
If the injury lawyer has spoken to lawyers on the subject of injury law that’s a great sign that he has a successful reputation among fellow lawyers.
6. Bar Service
Activity in state or national bar associations shows a lawyer’s willingness to give back to the community. (A sign of good character.)
7. Representative Cases
Has the lawyer handled a high profile case? You want to know that the attorney you are considering has been successful. Lawyers who handle high profile cases have usually already distinguished themselves in some way before getting that “big” case. It’s evidence of success.
8. What claims does the lawyer make about his service?
Claims like “we answer the phone” don’t cut it. You expect him to answer the phone. However, more personalized claims can give clues about what the lawyer and his firm consider important. Here are some that, if true, carry some meaning:
a. We return client phone calls within 24 hours.
b. We utilize a “team approach” in our firm.
c. We provide you the cell phone number of the lawyer assigned to your case. (This shows an unusually high degree of dedication).
d. We speak Spanish, or Italian or Greek.
e. We offer weekend and evening appointments. (If you absolutely can’t make it on a weekday then this service will be critical for you.)
f. We have 20 years experience. (There’s no substitute for experience in the injury business as experience can translates into getting the best possible dollar on your case).
g. We provide help on property damage claims. (Some injury firms won’t touch a property damage claim and this can be a problem if you get offered a clearly inadequate sum for your totaled vehicle).
h. We offer home and hospital visits if you are unable to travel because of your injuries.
From his website you should be able to gather some clues as to what this lawyer is like. Are there photographs of the lawyer? Has he shared why he became a lawyer? Has she described cases that were important to her?
Has the lawyer been involved in the community? Are there inspirational quotes on the site that help to define the lawyer’s values? What do the testimonials say about the lawyer?
Lawyers are not permitted by their rules of ethics to make specific promises about the outcome of a case. However, they can guarantee a prompt response to your request for information.
With a little care in perusing the qualifications and characteristics of your prospective injury lawyer, you have a much better chance of picking one who will work well with you and get you the result you are hoping for.