July 27, 2015
6 Essential Questions You Must Ask A Personal Injury Lawyer
If you have been severely injured in an accident, you want to be assured that you will be have the best chance of getting compensation. A good accident lawyer could be the difference between an excellent result and going home with nothing. Here are some essential questions for personal injury lawyers that you must ask – and they should be happy to respond.
Are You Qualified To Take The Case?
Find out how long the lawyer has been practicing, and where they got their qualifications from. Look into their expertise in the area that you need them for, and also ask them for details of their performance record in court. According to Zaner Harden lawyers Marc Harden and Kurt Zaner, a good trial lawyer is vital for personal injury cases. How many cases have they won and how many have they lost? Out of those, how many were for the injured party, and which of them were for a defendant?
What’s Your Percentage?
Most lawyers charge a contingency fee, which means they get a percentage of your damages, and there will be no legal fees due if you lose the case. Contingency fees can vary wildly from firm to firm and case to case, but you can certainly expect a figure in the region between 25 percent and 40 percent. While it might be tempting to go for the cheapest contingency fee, better representation could mean you could walk away with a higher payout.
Do You Charge Advanced Case Costs?
Your lawyer may not charge you legal fees, but you may be liable for advanced case costs. You need to make sure you won’t have to take the hit if you lose, as these costs can be significant.
Who Will Take My Case?
Many legal firms have a senior representative who will run through your interview questions with you. But as soon as the case starts you are suddenly shifted into the hands of a junior level attorney. They might do an excellent job for you, but you will want to meet him first.
How Long Will This Take?
Injury claims can take an age to get to a verdict. Sometimes it is the court’s fault, but other times it can be the lawyer that you choose who has preferential cases to work on. If you have to wait 18 months or so to get your case to trial, you will be missing out on the money you may be entitled to.
How Much Could I Win?
Make sure you ask this question for the right reasons. If you are interviewing several lawyers to find a suitable fit, don’t get too excited when one of them promises a huge payout. A good accident attorney will tell you of all the possibilities. Although the real answer could be anywhere on a very broad spectrum, it will be beneficial for you to know where those figures lie. And, it can also flag a lawyer who is clearly only promising you the world just to get your business.