Top Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Motor Vehicle Accident Lawyer
You must make many important decisions quickly when you have been in a car accident. It is essential to seek the assistance of a qualified, experienced motor vehicle accident lawyer. To ensure you have the right person for the job, start by asking them a few questions in your initial consultation.
What are Your Credentials as a Personal Injury Lawyer?
Your motor vehicle accident lawyer should have legal credentials on their website, such as licensing, authentic testimonials, and a list of successful settlement cases. If your case is complex, ask how long they have been practicing personal injury law to gauge their experience. You can also inquire about your lawyer’s reputation, educational background, and litigation experience.
Do You Specialize in Motor Vehicle Accidents?
Not all personal injury lawyers specialize in auto accidents. Most law firms provide legal services for various personal injury claims, including slips and falls, long-term disability, medical malpractice, product liability, and wrongful death. A motor vehicle accident lawyer will have experience navigating motor vehicle laws and insurance regulations to properly handle your case and get the compensation you are owed.
Have You Taken Similar Cases in the Past?
In many cases, injury lawyers can provide information about prior cases and results, so you should inquire about cases like yours when possible. Past performance is not an indicator of the future results of your case. Still, if your lawyer has handled similar cases in the past, those will indicate their ability to argue your case successfully.
Will You Be Working on My Case Personally?
It is essential to know who you will be working with. Often a case is handled primarily by a junior partner or paralegal after hiring a motor vehicle accident lawyer. This is all right since junior attorneys and paralegals are well-qualified. However, a good sign of a trustworthy attorney is their honesty when you ask them who will cover most of your case.
What are Your Legal Fees?
Motor vehicle accident lawyers typically structure their fees in one of three ways. Flat fees are used in relatively simple cases but are not suitable when the amount of work required is uncertain. Hourly rates are the most common attorney fee structure, but this can quickly become expensive. Most personal injury lawyers work on a contingency fee basis, meaning you will only be charged a fee once your case settles or you win a judgment in court. Since the lawyer only gets paid when you receive a settlement, they have more incentive to win your case.
What is the Assessment of My Case?
During the initial consultation, a motor vehicle accident lawyer will explain how they will approach your case and how it has been assessed. It will outline plans for investigating the accident, asking for the settlement, and accepting the insurance settlement versus settling in court. They will also provide you with an estimated monetary amount you will be expected to receive as the settlement.
How Likely Is It That My Case Will Go to Trial?
Most car accident claims are resolved without going to court. Only a small number end up in court, but the experience can be stressful and risky. If there is a dispute over who is at fault or the insurance provider thinks you are asking for more compensation than necessary, this may cause your claim to go to court. A motor vehicle accident lawyer will explain why your case might go to court if they think so or express their confidence that your case will be resolved without going to court.
How Long Will It Take to Resolve My Case?
While most insurance companies want to settle and pay your claim as soon as possible, this is not always the case. It is essential to know how long legal proceedings will disrupt your life before you are compensated. No motor vehicle accident lawyer will be able to give you an exact time frame, but they should be able to provide you with a general estimate based on the length of similar past cases.
If you have been in a car accident, it is crucial that you receive legal representation from an expert with experience in personal injury and vehicle accidents. By asking these questions, you can rest assured that you are choosing a motor vehicle accident lawyer with your best interests in mind. Contact Franklin Law Firm today to get started.