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How to Select an Injury Lawyer

If you have been injured in an accident it is time think about hiring a lawyer. Here are some guidelines to help you through the process.

Generalist or Specialist?

Your divorce lawyer may have done a great job for you but he may not be the best choice for your injury case. Find a lawyer who works primarily on injury cases.

Prepare a List of Questions

Your list of questions should be personal to you so do not hesitate to use your imagination. Here are a few questions to consider for your list:

a. How long has she practiced injury law?

Note: Ideally five years full time. It takes five years to learn the ropes in any area of law.

b. How many cases has she handled?

Note: With five years experience she would have likely handled to conclusion over one hundred cases.

c. Has she handled any cases like yours?

Note: It is not absolutely necessary that she has handled a case identical to yours but if yours is an unusual case her specific experience could be a big plus.

d. What is her largest settlement or verdict?

Note: If yours is a $50,000 case it may not matter that the lawyer has numerous half million cases to her credit.

e. Has she published articles on personal injury law?

Note: This shows a demonstrated interest in injury lawyer and an ability to communicate in writing–important because much of the negotiating in an injury case takes place through written communication.

f. Has she spoken to other lawyers on injury subjects?

Note: Once again, this shows an interest in injury law but also public speaking ability which could be important for the courtroom.

g. Will she actually work on your case?

Note: As a lawyer gets more experience she works on bigger and bigger cases. If yours is a small case the lawyer will probably delegate it to a junior attorney. This is not a problem so long as the senior lawyer is supervising the activities.

h. Is she board certified in injury law?

Note: Some states do not offer board certification in injury law but if your state offers it and your attorney has gotten it, that is a very good sign.

i. Does she carry malpractice insurance?

Note: Nearly all successful injury lawyers will have this coverage. If your candidate does not, it is a red flag.

j. How much is your case worth?

Note: Most successful lawyers will be reluctant to estimate the value of your case without looking at your medical bills and records. Some lawyers will give you a high estimate on the value of your case to get you signed up. Do not fall for it. You should probably avoid any lawyer who does this.

k. Why does she believe she should handle your case?

Note: This one is like those questions they ask at the end of beauty pageants. It gives the lawyer a chance to sell herself.

Now that your list of questions is ready, it is time to start searching. Here are some methods to compile your candidate list.

Get a Referral

Your divorce lawyer will know an experienced injury lawyer. Ask him for a referral. If you are treating with a chiropractor who often works on injury cases, your chiropractor will likely be able to make a referral to an injury lawyer with a lot of successful experience. Some of your friends may have had a great experience with their injury lawyer.

Search the Internet

Nearly every lawyer and law firm has a web site. You can begin there by searching for “Wisconsin injury attorney” or “Albuquerque personal injury lawyer” for example.

Complete Your List

Using your internet research and any referrals you have been given, create a list of suitable injury lawyer candidates

Make Contact

After you have completed your list it is time to begin communicating with your candidates. Call or send an email. See how long it takes for them to get back to you.

Narrow Your List

Scratch from your list those lawyers who took more than 24 hours to get back to you.

Talk to Them on the Phone

Using your list of questions as a guide, have a telephone conversation with each candidate lawyer. Get to know them. How do they feel about your case?

Make an Appointment

With the lawyer or lawyers with whom you feel most comfortable make an appointment. Use your intuition about whom to meet with. There is usually no charge for such an appointment. It’s called an “initial consultation.” It lets you get to know the lawyer a little more. Bring your list of questions. It’s time to get more answers.

Make a decision

You may feel comfortable enough at your first appointment to make a decision. Use your intuition once again. You will probably know when you have found the right match.

Conclusion

Like any major decision in life–it’s a combination of research of the facts followed by an intuitive conclusion. Usually you need both to make a great decision and hiring a lawyer is no exception.

What You Should Look For in Personal Injury Lawyers

Many people have experienced an injury caused by someone being reckless or careless. When this happens, they are inclined to file a lawsuit. Before doing so, it is important to speak with a lawyer. Personal injury lawyers are there to help clients that have been severely injured due to the negligence of another individual or business.

Many different types of personal injury claims are filed each year. These claims include medical malpractice, workplace injuries, slip and falls, and car accidents. A growing number of personal injury claims are being filed against businesses who are supplying defective products that cause injury. The reason behind filing a personal injury claim is to seek financial compensation due to the injuries that have been received. This amount of compensation is based on the extent of the injury and lost wages or loss of work.

When searching for a lawyer, keep in mind that not all lawyers specialize in person injury litigation. It is important to find a lawyer who does. The lawyer should also specialize in a specific type of injury as well. It is guaranteed that the insurance companies will have a heap of lawyers who are experienced in personal injury law and know it well. That is why you need a lawyer who is equally knowledgeable and experienced.

You will need to find a lawyer who has a number of medical experts at their disposal who will strengthen your case. The lawyer will need to have knowledge to cases that are similar to yours as well. A lot of time will be spent preparing for a personal injury case. Lawyers should be able to relieve your stress by filing motions when needed, gathering witness statements, and handle discovery.

Each lawyer has a specialty when it comes to the different types of personal injury claims. For example, people who are suing a physician will require a lawyer who specializes in the complicated and extensive laws regarding medical malpractice. A person who files a claim against a company for a defective product would not need the same type of lawyer.

People who have suffered from brain injuries or any other injury that prevents them from going back to work or have an injury that now requires lifelong medical care, should always hire a lawyer who has experience in these types of cases and who has won. These lawyers need to have medical experts and witnesses available who can help them prove the case. If you hire just any lawyer who is not experienced with your specific injury, the result will be lots of wasted time and money.

Car accidents, slip and fall cases, construction accidents, and defective product litigation all have lawyers who specialize in those areas. When interviewing potential lawyers, ask questions like: How many cases similar to yours have they worked? What was the final decision in those cases? What areas of personal injury do they specialize in?

Fighting insurance companies during personal injury litigation is the job of personal injury lawyers, not civilians. Your lawyer is responsible for helping you through the ordeal. They will provide the legal expertise needed to win the lawsuit. You need a lawyer to assure that you receive a fair trial. In order to release you of the burden of fighting insurance companies and focus on healing from your injury, it is imperative to have a good lawyer.

5 Benefits to Having a Personal Injury Lawyer Represent You

If you have been injured in a car accident or injured by another person’s actions, you have probably been told that you need to talk with a personal injury lawyer. In fact, in most cases, it is to your benefit to have a lawyer handle your case. Here are 5 benefits to having a personal injury lawyer represent you.

1. Personal Injury Lawyers Know Personal Injury Law.

This may sound obvious, but many people think that they know just as much as a lawyer and that a lawyer just collects the money. That is simply not true. Just because you have been injured doesn’t mean that you are entitled to full compensation for your injuries. Few states recognize contributory negligence nowadays, but contributory negligence says that if you even slightly contributed to a car accident, you are not entitled to compensation. Most states recognize some form of comparative negligence which allows you to receive at least some compensation for your injuries depending on your involvement in the car accident.

Another portion of personal injury law is knowing what personal injury claims to which a person is entitled. There are a lot of possible claims, many of which a non-lawyer doesn’t think about.

You benefit by the lawyer knowing personal injury law in that an insurance adjuster cannot BS or misrepresent the law in trying to convince you that you will not receive compensation to which you may really be entitled.

2. A Personal Injury Attorney Knows Insurance Law.

This may sound like it doesn’t make a difference, but it can make a dramatic difference. For example, an insurance policy may provide for a benefit of $20,000 to an injured person. The insurance adjusted tells you that he will give you the entire $20,000 since you have a good personal injury claim. What the insurance adjuster does not tell you is that there may be ways under state law that you can receive more. For instance, some states allow “stacking” of insurance policies in certain circumstances and this means that you can receive more compensation.

You benefit by a personal injury lawyer knowing if state laws entitle you to more compensation for your injuries than is apparent.

3. Personal Injury Attorneys Know Approximate Values Of Injuries

Experienced lawyers have handled a number of cases and have a good idea of what most injuries are worth. Also, personal injury lawyers know what facts may increase or decrease the amount of compensation to which you are entitled. By virtue of the attorneys’ experience, insurance adjusters and lawyers cannot BS or misrepresent the value of a personal injury claim.

4. A Personal Injury Lawyer Will Go To Court.

Insurance adjusters know that if a case goes to court, the insurance company could be forced to pay a lot more that they want to pay. The adjusters also know that if you are representing yourself, it will be difficult for you to go to court. They know that a personal injury attorney will go to court. Therefore, the adjusters have to be more realistic in what they offer you as compensation for your personal injuries.

5. Personal Injury Lawyers Generally Increase The Value Of A Case.

Basically for all of the reasons stated above, insurance adjusters will offer more compensation when a lawyer is representing you. Some people will tell you that the increased compensation amount is offset by having to pay a lawyer. So you end up with the same amount in the end. Sometimes that is true, but in many cases, because of his/her knowledge and experience, a personal injury lawyer will recover more than enough for your personal injury claims to offset the attorney fee.

I cannot and do not vouch for the experience or effectiveness of any personal injury lawyer. The above is merely a guide as to what you may expect. Also, the results of any case may be vary from lawyer to lawyer.

This is general information only. If you have any questions whatsoever, talk with a lawyer licensed in your state.

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