Dealing with an accident, especially when it is no fault of your own, is incredibly difficult. It can bring physical, emotional and financial hardship to you and your family. You will have many questions like how will I pay for my medical bills and provide for my family while I can’t work? On top of this uncertainty, insurance adjusters may begin to pressure you to make a quick settlement, well below what you deserve. If your claim is large enough, finding a capable accident attorney is essential. A lawyer who specializes in personal injury and accidents can help you get through this challenging time and get the compensation you deserve.
The question is: How do I find the accident attorney who is right for me?
Where to Start:
Advertisements for accident attorneys litter billboards, televisions and web pages across the nation. There seems to be no shortage of options. However, not all accident attorneys are created equal. Choosing who will represent you in court is a significant decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly.
A television or Google ad might be a place to start, but there is a lot of digging that needs to be done before making your final decision. When searching for an attorney, it is a good idea to build a list of candidates from several methods and then begin narrowing down your search.
Like any other service, you are likely to ask your friends, family and coworkers who did an excellent job for them when starting your search. The selection process should be the same for your attorney. Ask around to see if anyone close to you had a good or bad experience with a lawyer. People in your network will be honest with you about their experience because they have your best interest at heart.
A Referral Service
Several online websites can give you ratings and reviews of accident attorneys. Sites like Avvo.com are a place to do more extensive research on your list of candidates. These sites remove some of the guesswork and allow you to see what clients and fellow lawyers say about the potential attorney.
Attorney Web Pages
An attorney’s web page allows you to see the type of law they practice (i.e., accident, personal injury, family, workers’ compensation, traffic, etc.). The website will also have contact information if you decide to place them in your list moving forward.
Meeting with Attorneys
The Phone Call
Start with a phone call to their office; this call should be a good indicator of their professionalism. Questions you should ask yourself after the phone call:
- Did someone promptly answer the phone?
- Was the secretary or clerical assistant kind and engaged or disinterested and rude?
- Were you able to talk to one of the lawyers?
- Were you able to schedule a meeting?
If you feel unsure of them after the phone interaction, you can remove that lawyer from your list. A professional office will make every caller feel like their call is valuable and worthy of their time. If you feel comfortable with the firm, set up an appointment with a lawyer to discuss your case.
Questions to Ask a Personal Injury Lawyer
During your consultation, you should bring a list of questions to ask the lawyer. Having a list of items to discuss will allow you to be prepared and confident in your decision-making process. For both sides, time is money. Make sure to check their website to answer as many of your questions as possible to effectively use your time. Some recommended items are:
- Who will be handling my case?
- How many years have you been practicing law?
- What percentage of those cases were injury or accident-related?
- How many cases have you taken to trial?
- What has your success rate been with cases like mine?
- How often will I be updated about the status of my case, and what means of communication will you use?
Your Compensation Goal
When speaking with the attorney, talk through your options for compensation. This conversation won’t have an exact number, but it will be a base overview to align expectations before starting this working relationship.
Your Final Decision
After all the searching, your decision will come down to your gut. Did you feel confident and comfortable with the attorney? Were they helpful and interested in your case? Do you think they will fight for what you deserve or settle quickly? It isn’t an easy decision, but if you do your homework, you should be able to find the accident attorney that is right for you.
Has someone else’s negligence hurt you? Are you still looking for a reputable accident attorney backed by years of experience?
Contact Tolbert Beadle and let us fight for the compensation you deserve.