Gone are the days when one small-town lawyer handled every type of legal issue that faced the residents. Just like medical care has evolved, law has become highly specialized in modern times. Having more categories does not mean that there are less attorneys practicing, and finding the right one can seem overwhelming. Those seeking the best ways to find a qualified personal injury lawyer should not settle for one that does not serve their needs and knowing what qualities to look for makes this process much easier.
Time and Research
To get started, it is a good idea to create a list of must haves, such as a personal injury specialty, experience with similar cases, and state licensure. Asking friends, family, and colleagues for recommendations is a good start. Researching lawyer’s directories and Google is another. Lawyers that practice in different areas of the law and local bar associations can also be good referral resources.
Once the names are collected, it is time to whittle them down. The state bar association and lawyers’ websites have useful information, and online reviews can provide additional insights. After this is narrowed down to three to five names, it is time to make phone calls and set up appointments. Asking beforehand if there is a charge for the consultation is a good idea, as most lawyers will not charge for this.
It is essential to be prepared before meeting with a potential personal injury lawyer for an initial consultation. Potential clients should bring copies of medical records, bills, details of income loss, insurance company correspondence, and police reports.
During the discussion, questions about the length of time the lawyer has been in practice and whether they most often represent defendants or plaintiffs should be asked. It is also good to know if that lawyer will be taking on the case or if they will hand it to another firm member. Oftentimes, less experienced lawyers carry out more routine tasks, but plaintiffs should know who the lead will be. Another question to ask is the percentage of the practice that deals with personal injury cases.
Plaintiffs have different goals for their settlements; some wait it out for larger amounts, while others want faster compensation. The lawyer should be able to provide a general idea of what the case is worth and be willing to work toward whatever goals the plaintiff seeks.
Reasons Why Clients Get Rejected
Finding a personal injury lawyer is a two-way street, since lawyers also have to agree to take on the case. Sometimes cases are rejected for a variety of reasons. Most personal injury lawyers work on a contingency basis, meaning that fees are a percentage of the eventual compensation. If this amount is small, it may not be feasible for them to take on the case if their overhead costs are high. Other causes for declining cases include cases that are too hard to prove, liable parties without insurance, or if the lawyer simply does not feel comfortable with the client.
Our Virginia Beach Personal Injury Lawyers Have the Experience You Need for Personal Injury Cases
If you are considering making a personal injury claim, contact our Virginia Beach personal injury lawyers. At East Coast Trial Lawyers, we will fight to obtain the compensation you deserve for your injuries. For a free consultation, complete our online form or call us at 757-352-2237. Located in Virginia Beach, Virginia, we serve clients throughout Chesapeake, Eastern Shores, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth, and Suffolk, Virginia, as well as North Carolina and nationwide.