Choosing a Personal Injury Lawyer
Are you looking for a personal injury lawyer in Irvine? If you’ve been the victim of an auto-related accident and are seeking financial compensation, it’s crucial to hire a lawyer who fights to get you what you deserve. Here are the qualities to look for when hiring a personal injury attorney.
Benefits of Hiring a Personal Injury Lawyer
A lawyer provides legal support to victims injured by the negligence of others. That negligence may include a car accident that causes a victim physical, mental, and financial damage. Personal injury lawyers help those victims file civil lawsuits in court to gain financial compensation.
Although it may be tempting to file a claim yourself, the legal process can be complex. The benefit of hiring an attorney is that their professional expertise ensures the claim is filed correctly, promptly, and in a way that leads to the compensation you deserve.
How to Find the Best Personal Injury Lawyer
The process of finding the best lawyer has three main steps: conducting preliminary research, developing a shortlist, and making the final decision. Let’s take a look at each in detail.
1. Conduct Preliminary Research
Conducting preliminary research begins by going over your goals and the specifics of your case. Would you like your personal injury claim to be handled quickly, or would you prefer to go to trial? What are the details of your case and can you describe the injuries you suffered? After defining what you’re looking for, you can ask around for referrals, search online reviews, and browse peer-reviewed sites.
If a friend or a family member has experience dealing with a personal injury lawyer, it can help to ask them for recommendations. Also, if you have friends or family members in the legal community, you may ask them to refer you to someone they recommend.
Online reviews from Google, Facebook, and Yelp can give you valuable feedback from past clients. Focus on the quality of the feedback versus the quantity. Detailed feedback will indicate what to expect from that lawyer.
Peer Reviewed Sites
Alongside the review sites above, there are a number of lawyer-reviewed sites that provide high-quality feedback. This feedback is based on lawyers and legal professionals reviewing other lawyers in terms of expertise and experience. Some of the most common sites are:
2. Create a Shortlist
The preliminary research can help you develop a shortlist of potential lawyers to retain. The next step is to investigate them further by going on their website or contacting them in person to determine their expertise, credentials, experience, and resources.
Some personal injury lawyers work on a variety of different cases ranging from various types of personal injury accidents. If your specific case is related to a car accident, then you’ll want to hire a lawyer who specializes in auto-related accidents.
This expertise is crucial to getting the settlement you deserve. Additionally, the statute of limitations varies depending on the jurisdiction, type of accident, as well as who was involved.
For most personal injury lawyers, education starts with earning a law degree from an institution accredited by the American Bar Association. After that, they must pass the California State Bar.
Many personal injury attorneys also take part in continuing legal education (CLE) alongside joining professional organizations. Three well-respected nationwide organizations are the American Bar Association (ABA), the American Association for Justice (AAJ), and the National Trial Lawyers (NTL). Asking questions about education and training can help you find the right personal injury lawyer for you.
Alongside education and expertise, you’ll want to hire an attorney who has a proven track record of results. You can find this by looking at testimonials from past clients and searching for their verdicts and settlements. You may also want to find out if they have worked on cases similar to yours in the recent past.
To better understand if a lawyer has the right resources to support you through a personal injury claim, it’s important to learn more about the law firm. Are they large or small? Do they have qualified paralegals and support staff? And, most importantly, will they have enough time to adequately handle your case?
Although most personal injury lawsuits are settled before a trial, some do go to trial. If that happens, you’ll need a personal injury lawyer who has the time, resources, and experience to handle it.
3. Make the Final Choice
After using the above factors to whittle down your shortlist to 3 or so candidates, the next step is to contact each personal injury lawyer. In almost all cases, this consultation should be free. To prepare for the consultation, review the details of your case, bring all the necessary documentation, and focus on fees and communication style.
Fees refer to attorney fees and case expenses. When you hire a personal injury lawyer, they usually work on a contingency-fee-basis. That means the lawyer earns a percentage of the final compensation if the case is won. Usually, this is 33.3% or higher if the claim is taken to trial. Also, if the case isn’t won, then you don’t pay an attorney fee.
However, they may charge for case expenses such as medical records, court reports, filing fees, and more. There’s no standard for how this is done. Some personal injury attorneys charge an upfront fee while others charge an added reimbursement fee if the case is won.
Fees, experience, and expertise provide objective ways to find the best personal injury lawyer for you. However, it’s also important to take subjective measures such as communication style.
During your consultation, do you feel that the lawyer is committed to fighting for your personal injury claim? Do you feel that they are transparent and easy to communicate with? Answering these questions for yourself can help you pick the right lawyer for you.
Contact the Best Personal Injury Lawyer in Irvine
If you’re the victim of a car accident and want compensation for the damages done, it’s important to file a personal injury claim with the best personal injury lawyer around.
Woodbridge Accidents Lawyers in Irvine, California specializes in personal injury claims from auto-related accidents. We know how to deal with insurance companies. We’ve won 99% of our cases and don’t charge you a dime until we’ve won. Contact us today for a free consultation.