What Questions Should I Ask a Personal Injury Attorney?
Have you been injured in an accident caused by another person? If so, you may be wondering how you are going to pay your medical bills and other living expenses while you are out of work healing from your injuries. The insurance company might be pushing you to settling your claim quickly. While it may be tempting to settle as soon as possible because you need money, it is in your best interest to consult with a personal injury attorney before you settle your accident claim. You may be accepting far less than your claim is actually worth.
How do I Hire a Personal Injury Attorney?
Most personal injury attorneys offer free consultations (our office does). Your first step is to meet with an attorney to discuss your legal options for recovery. When meeting with an attorney, you should ask the following questions to ensure you are hiring an attorney who will provide competent, skilled, and trusted legal representation.
1. How long have you been practicing law?
Law school teaches attorneys how to write legal briefs, research law, and argue complex legal theories. However, law school does not teach the practical skills needed to become a successful personal injury attorney. Years of handling hundreds of personal injury cases gives an attorney the skills, knowledge, and experience you want when fighting an aggressive insurance company or a party denying liability for the accident.
2. What types of law do you practice?
If your leg is broken and requires surgery, you do not ask your family doctor to perform surgery. You go to an orthopedic surgeon. If you are injured in an accident, you want an attorney who concentrates his law practice on injury cases rather than other areas of law such as real estate, estate planning, and, criminal law. Make sure you hire an attorney who focuses on personal injury law.
3. How many cases do you litigate?
A good personal injury attorney does what is best for his client. In many cases, this involves negotiating a settlement without the expense and time involved in filing a personal injury lawsuit. However, not all cases settle out of court. If the other party refuses to negotiate in a fair manner, you want to make sure your attorney has sufficient litigation experience to handle a trial.
4. What is your fee?
Most personal injury attorneys accept cases on a contingency basis meaning you do not pay any attorney fees until the attorney recovers compensation for you. Some attorneys may require the client to pay for costs (i.e. filing fees, copies, postage, etc.) associated with investigating, negotiating, and litigating the claim. Make sure you understand exactly what you are required to pay regardless of the outcome of your case. Furthermore, make sure your fee agreement is in writing and clearly defines all of the terms of your agreement with the attorney.
5. Can I speak to you if I have questions?
Attorneys handle many cases at one time; therefore, they have staff who assist them with various tasks. However, you should be able to speak with your attorney if you have a question or concern about your case. Ask your attorney how he handles requests for a return telephone call or an office conference.
Call Torem & Associates for a Free Legal Consultation
Our attorneys have been practicing personal injury law for many years. Our experience and skill are what you need when you have been injured by another party. We offer free consultations and accept most personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis. We strong recommend that you take advantage of our free case evaluation to learn your rights and options for receiving compensation for your accident claim.
Call Torem & Associates at (888) 500-5000 or use our convenient online contact form to schedule a free consultation with a Fresno personal injury attorney.