What to Ask a Personal Injury Lawyer
In 2021, there were more than 57,000 car crashes on Californian roads. Tragically, 7,330 of them resulted in fatalities or serious injuries. If you’ve been injured in a car accident, you know that in a split second, your life can change forever. If the accident was someone else’s fault, you may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit. This can help you to focus on your recovery while a personal injury attorney fights to get you the compensation you deserve.
But with thousands of attorneys to choose from in Southern California, how can you find the right one? Before you make your final choice, schedule free case evaluations with a few different law firms. Ask them these seven questions to find the right Buena Park personal injury lawyer to fight your case.
1. Have You Handled Similar Cases?
Every personal injury case is unique. However, it pays to get legal help from an attorney who has experience in the particular area of personal injury law that relates to your case.
Personal injury law can include anything that causes injury to a victim from any person or entity. But if you were injured in an auto accident, it’s better to choose a law firm that focuses on these types of claims. A personal injury attorney can represent the following types of cases:
- Car accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Truck accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Uber accidents
If your loved one lost their life in an auto accident that was someone else’s fault, you may be able to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit. This can help you to secure compensation for the financial and emotional impact of your loss.
2. What Challenges Do You Anticipate?
The purpose of a case evaluation is for the attorney to assess how strong your case is. They will only take your case on if they believe they can win. However, every case has challenges that an attorney will have to resolve.
At the case evaluation, as them what challenges and difficulties they anticipate. This gives you an opportunity to see how well they have understood your case. Their experience should help them to identify difficulties and let you know how they will overcome them.
If they reassure you that your case will not have any obstacles, that could be a red flag. For example, the statute of limitations in California is two years in most cases. However, if a government vehicle was involved, the statute is only 6 months. It will be the responsibility of a personal injury attorney to find a legal resolution in the allotted time frame.
3. How Much Compensation Could I Receive?
No attorney can give you a concrete answer to this question. But based on their prior experience, they should be able to provide you with a ballpark figure. They may refer you to examples of similar cases they have fought and won.
Remember that every case has its own merits. Results vary, and you should take this amount with a grain of salt. When comparing attorneys, you should expect them all to come up with figures that are roughly in the same ballpark. If one attorney promises you a lot more, you’re right to be suspicious.
Of course, you can always give them a chance to explain why they feel that way. But be wary of any attorney who overinflates your chances of success. Calculate the average based on the accumulated estimation from all of the lawyers you have met with to get the most accurate number.
4. How Do You Bill for Your Legal Services?
When you hire a lawyer to represent you in a personal injury case, they usually work on contingency. This means that you will not pay anything upfront. They will deduct their fees from your final compensation.
If they are not successful, you will not have to pay a cent. However, ensure this is the agreement and that there are no hidden fees. When comparing lawyers, ask them about their fee arrangements. Most law firms charge a percentage of the final compensation.
Always make sure that you are comparing like for like. Ask for their payment terms in writing to make it easier to compare them.
5. Do You Have Trial Experience?
Your lawyer will usually work hard to achieve a settlement for your personal injury case without going to trial. They will negotiate hard with the other party to achieve a fair settlement. But if the other party will not agree to fair compensation or does not make a settlement offer, you may have to go to trial.
At trial, the judge or jury will rule on the case. They will decide how much compensation you will receive. Therefore, before you hire an attorney, ask them about their trial experience and winning percentage.
You need an experienced attorney on your side. A lawyer who can tenaciously defend your interests in the courtroom as well as at the negotiating table.
6. Who Will Work on My Case?
Law firms employ a team of professionals to handle cases. This includes attorneys, paralegals, and other office staff. While you may meet with a senior attorney initially, it’s good to ask who will actually be handling most of the work on your case.
Ask about their experience and who will supervise them. You need to feel confident that you’ve got the best legal representation possible before you entrust your case to them.
7. How Often Will You Communicate With Me?
Good communication between the client and attorney is vital in any personal injury case. You need to feel reassured that you’ll receive regular updates on how your case is progressing.
Each attorney has a different communication style. Choose one that you feel comfortable with, as you may be having a lot of contact over the weeks and months ahead.
A great personal injury attorney will provide the legal help you need in your time of need. They’ll keep you updated on the progress of your case. They’ll negotiate hard to get you the best possible settlement.
Find the Right Personal Injury Attorney for You
At Park Accident Attorneys, we focus solely on auto accident personal injury cases. So if you’ve been injured on the road, whether you were a driver, a passenger, or in a Uber, we can help.
It all starts with a free consultation. Call us at (714) 735-0118 or schedule your consultation online today.