Are you in the market for a personal injury lawyer? Have you flipped through the phone book or looked on the internet at the many, many options available to you? If you are feeling overwhelmed, take heart! With a little bit of education, you will be able to make a responsible, informed decision.
Make sure that you hire an attorney that specializes in personal injury law. There are lawyers out there who practice several types of law. It is in your best interest to find one who only practices this type of law. It will increase your chances of success since your attorney will know exactly what he is doing.
If you lost income as a result of your injuries, you will need proof for court. Speak with your employer and ask them to give you a statement that outlines how much money you earn and how many days of work you missed because of what happened to you. Depending on whether you earn an hourly wage or not, your income tax return could also be valuable documentation to bring with you.
Make sure that you gather all of the information you can from anyone that was involved in your injury. This means that you should get the addresses, names and phone numbers of the party that injured you as well as any witnesses that were on the scene. You should also take note of anything that is said during the time of the accident.
If you are considering hiring an attorney, set up a consultation first. Generally, this consultation should be free, but make sure you clarify this point before you head into the meeting. If a fee is involved, it is likely that lawyer will charge other fees as well, like a retainer, and you may want to move on as a result.
Document your costs. Record any expenses or loss of income you incur as a result of your injury. Some of these documents may include insurance forms, medical bills, prescription receipts, and property damage repairs. If you miss work because of the injury, be sure you also document any lost wages. Document each expense as it occurs, while it is fresh in your memory.
You needn’t call your lawyer simply because you have a little discomfort after an accident. There is good chance that you will feel well pretty soon. You might, however, need to get in touch with a good lawyer after a few days of continued pain.
If you are involved in a personal injury case, the other person involved may have a special “diplomatic status” where you cannot sue them. You need to check with your insurance company to make sure you are covered in this case. If you are not, you might end up paying for the entire accident yourself.
Carefully read legal advertisements of personal-injury lawyers to determine the legitimacy of the practice. Sometimes, a lawyer will guarantee that they will win for you when this is an impossible situation to predict. Skip over these lawyers as they are simply trying to reel you in for the money you bring to the table.
If your personal injuries are minor, you probably do not want to hire a personal injury lawyer. The medical costs of something like a bruised leg would not justify the expense of hiring an attorney. In those cases, try to work things out with the other party amicably, or take them to small claims court.
Don’t apologize to the other person in your accident! This implies that you are at fault, and they could use it against you. You may be at fault, but it’s best to let the authorities sort it out.
Keep in mind most personal injury lawyers work on a contingency basis. These attorneys get paid a pecentage of the ultimate judgement for your injury. This can range to as high as 40% of the eventual settlement. Find out the contingency percentage before you make any agreement with an attorney.
Finding a personal injury lawyer is easy. Finding a good personal injury lawyer, however, is a little harder! Your lawyer will have a tremendous bearing on your case – who you choose can make all the difference in the world. Make sure you put the time and effort into this important decision.