When you’re reeling from a car accident injury, finding the right personal injury lawyer might be the last thing on your mind. However, as the medical bills pile up, you may find it necessary to hire a car accident lawyer to defend you in court.
When you search for “car accident lawyer near me” you will find hundreds of options. So, picking the best car accident attorney can seem overwhelming. How can you know which lawyer is the right option for you?
Before you hire a lawyer, it’s important to ask some key questions to find the right representation for your case. These 7 questions can offer valuable insight into your attorney’s experience, pricing, and expectations for your case.
Make sure to ask these crucial questions before you hire a car accident injury attorney.
1. What Is Your Specialty?
While any attorney could legally represent you in court. It’s in your best interest to work with someone experienced in car accident cases like yours. Even if you have a personal attorney you work with. They may not have a lot of experience in similar cases.
Even if an attorney’s specialties are listed on their website, asking them directly can help you see whether they usually work on car accident cases. You can also ask them how many similar cases they’ve worked on this year and whether they won those cases.
In some firms, only one or two lawyers may specialize in car accident cases. While the other lawyers handle different types of cases. Confirm which lawyers will be handling your case and if they have time to devote to your case before committing to a firm.
2. Am I Responsible for Any Costs if I Lose?
Talking about fees is a given when you’re hiring a lawyer. Naturally, it’s important to know how much your lawyer’s fees are and what you could expect to pay. However, you may forget to ask about out-of-pocket court costs that your attorney could bill you for later.
Many car accident attorneys accept contingency fees, meaning that you only pay their fee from money you recover when you win. But, there are often other costs that come up over the course of a trial. If you don’t ask how these costs are handled ahead of time, you may be surprised by a bill even after you lose.
3. How Much Is My Case Worth?
Once you’ve determined that your attorney has experience in car accident cases, this question should be an easy one for them to answer once you explain the details of your case. While a lawyer may not know the exact monetary value of your case, the best car accident attorney will easily be able to tell you if your case is worth pursuing.
Most lawyers will have to ask a few questions to answer this question accurately. If your lawyer doesn’t ask any follow-up questions, that can be a red flag.
4. How Often Do Cases Like Mine Go to Court?
While many car accident cases are settled out of court, it’s important to find an attorney who is prepared to go to trial. If your attorney automatically assumes your case will settle, it may be best to steer clear.
Even if many cases go to court, it’s crucial that your attorney is experienced in trial settings and has the availability to defend your case in front of a jury. Otherwise, your attorney may refer you to another lawyer if your case goes to trial, which might prolong your case.
When you interview your car accident lawyer, ask them about cases that went to court in the last year and whether they won or lost those cases. This can give you the peace of mind to know if your attorney is prepared in any circumstance.
5. Do You Anticipate Any Issues With My Case?
In many cases, this question is a litmus test for your attorney’s honesty.
Your lawyer will usually ask some more follow-up questions to try and fully understand your case. If they assume your case is an easy one automatically without further explanation, that can be a red flag.
A good car accident attorney will take the time to explain negligence, fault, and foreseeability when you ask this question. The best sign is if your lawyer offers a similar recent case as an example.
6. Do You Have References I Can Speak To?
Online reviews may help steer you towards a good attorney, but the best car accident lawyer always has a few clients ready to offer a glowing review.
Even if you found your attorney through a friend or family member’s recommendation, it helps to speak with someone who has personal experience as a client in a case like yours.
If your lawyer cites privacy reasons instead of providing references, you should consider working with someone else.
7. How Will You Respond if I’m Not Satisfied With My Settlement?
Landing on a final settlement amount can involve time and negotiation. Being impatient doesn’t serve you when it comes to receiving a fair settlement, so it’s important to know whether your lawyer is looking to settle as quickly as possible or if they are willing to help you get the best settlement available.
This question depends on your goals. If you’re injured and have medical bills piling up, you may want your settlement handled fast. However, if the other party responds to your demand letter with a low offer, you may be inclined to push for a better settlement.
In some cases, when a settlement cannot be agreed to, a case can go to trial and go longer than you or your lawyer expected. Before you hire an attorney, it’s crucial to know if you are both on the same page about your desired settlement amount and your plan to pursue it.
Finding a Car Accident Lawyer You Can Trust Is Easier Than You Think
There’s a ton of things on your mind after getting in a serious car accident. Finding the right car accident lawyer can feel overwhelming during such a stressful time.
That’s why we’re here to help.
Contact us for all your car accident litigation needs in and around Tampa, Florida. We’ll help you get the compensation you deserve so you can get on with your life.