A personal injury can leave behind a deep impact on an individual’s life. It can cause injury and damage on many levels. More often than not, a personal injury can result in physical and mental trauma, expensive medical bills, and loss of livelihood. Taking the recourse of law can help you to seek compensation for your injuries and make life a bit easier in such trying times. This is where a personal injury lawyer comes into the picture. Having a skilful lawyer can help you to navigate the legal waters with ease and protect your rights as a victim. But before you hire a lawyer, it’s important to have answers to a few questions first. Here are a few essential questions to ask your personal injury lawyer before hiring:
How long have you been dealing with personal injury cases?
You want a lawyer who is experienced and skilful in handling personal injury cases. If your lawyer has been dealing with personal injury cases for long, it means he or she is well aware of the complications involved in such cases and has the ability to deal with them easily. Someone with less experience may not be able to do complete justice to your case.
What will this case cost me in terms of money?
You must get a clear idea of how much the case will cost you. Be sure to talk about all kinds of expenses related to the case. Most people think that the lawyer’s fee is the only expense involved in a case of law. But in reality, one has to bear several other expenses, including court costs and doctor’s fees to review your records.
How much do you charge as contingency percentage?
Most personal injury experts accept a contingency fee. This means you don’t have to pay the lawyer’s fee if you do not win the case. But what you need to know is how much the lawyer will charge you after winning. The percentage of contingency fee varies from one lawyer to another. Some lawyers may charge 33% of the compensation you receive while someone others may ask you to part with 50% of your fees. To avoid any confusion after winning the case, clear these questions at the very beginning.
Normally, how long does it take to resolve a case similar to this one?
Personal injury cases can sometimes take a long time to resolve. The litigation may drag on for months and sometimes even for years. There are several factors that can impact the speed of a personal injury case. But your potential lawyer will be able to offer you a rough idea of the time estimate. It’s vital for you to ask this question as you need to prepare yourself to make it through before the case finally gets resolved.
Are you the one who will handle my case?
Sometimes lawyers may delegate a case to someone else. When you are talking to a certain lawyer, make sure he or she is the one who will handle the case if you decide to hire. If the lawyer says that your case is to be handled by someone else, ask to talk to that person directly. It’s always better to discuss the case openly with the person who will actually be handling it.
How much compensation is my case worth?
An experienced lawyer will have a good idea about the amount of compensation that you can expect to receive in your case. Your lawyer will even be able to tell you about how certain factors such as liability, discovery, etc. can impact your verdict or offer of settlement. If your lawyer seems to make an unrealistic estimate, use your own judgment in such a case.
Will my case go to trial?
Personal injury cases can sometimes proceed to trial. Ask your lawyer whether your case is likely to be settled out of court or will it proceed to trial. If your case proceeds to trial, know that it may take you longer to get compensation than an out-of-court settlement. Also, be sure that your lawyer has won cases before a jury. In the event of your case going to trial, you can rest assured that your lawyer will be able to handle it with ease.
Is there any alternate way to resolve my case?
You should not shy away from asking if there is an alternate way to resolve the case other than taking the legal route of action.