When you decide that it is best to hire an experienced attorney to handle your case, it is recommended that you do your due diligence to find the best attorney for your needs. Look at your case carefully and the specific needs you have.
Finding an attorney that is willing to have a personal relationship with you is essential. Make sure they are realistic and then try to find an attorney that best fits who you are and the case that you have.
Once you find a lawyer that you feel is the best fit for your individual needs, you can expect to meet with them for a thorough evaluation or meeting to discuss the facts of the case. It is important that you meet with your actual attorney so that you truly know who will be handling your case.
In this meeting you will talk about the kinds of damages you are entitled to recover and get your questions answered as to what you can expect. It is also your duty to make known the expectations you have as a client. Getting all of this out up front will make for a better case and attorney client relationship.
Your attorney should give you an honest and straightforward explanation as to the legal process, what kind of damages you could be entitled to recover and how their contingency fee works. Always look for an attorney who does not promise things they actually have no control over such as specific amounts of money you will get or promises that seem too good to be true. Each case is absolutely individual, and no two accidents are the same. There is no way to predict the future outcome of a case. A good attorney, however, will use their experience and prior cases as a good gauge as to what you could expect but will never promise a specific outcome.
Additionally, not all cases are good cases. There are times that an attorney will let you know that the case is not one that will result in a favorable outcome and may turn down the case. It is best not to take this personally and if you wish, seek a second opinion.
Once your case is accepted by your attorney; medical records will be obtained, and a thorough investigation will be done into your case. Now, be aware that this is not an overnight process. It takes time to do this and you may even be deposed or interviewed during the process. Going into your case with realistic expectations is important and will help with the understanding of how lengthy this process can sometimes be.
It is after this that if a settlement cannot be reached, a demand letter will be prepared. This is where your attorney will lay it all out for the other side and from here, based on the response, an attempt at a settlement will be negotiated on your behalf.
The next steps can include taking the case into litigation through the filing of a formal lawsuit. A Personal injury lawsuit or litigation begins when a plaintiff files a civil complaint against another person, business, corporation, or government agency otherwise known as the defendant, alleging that they acted carelessly or irresponsibly in connection with an accident or injury that caused harm. This action is known as “filing a lawsuit” and this process is again, time consuming and lengthy.
Honestly though, most disputes over fault for an accident or injury are resolved through informal settlement, usually among those personally involved in the dispute, their insurers, and attorneys representing both sides in the form of a mediation or arbitration.
In these instances, a settlement can be reached in which both sides forgo any further action (such as a lawsuit), choosing instead to resolve the matter through payment of an agreeable amount of money.
As you can see, this process is time consuming and definitely requires legal expertise. Allowing a licensed attorney to handle this for you not only makes sense but provides you the best outcome for your case as you have the experience and knowledge of an attorney on your side, as your best advocate.