If you are filing an insurance claim or lawsuit for personal injury, you need an attorney on your side to investigate your claim, guide you through the legal processes, and advocate for maximum compensation on your behalf. However, not all attorneys or firms will be a right fit for your case and your communication preferences. Finding the right Irvine personal injury lawyer can take a bit of research, but it could make a significant difference for your claim.
Think About What You Want in a Personal Injury Attorney
Your case is specific to your circumstances. A lawyer who may have worked well for a friend’s car accident won’t necessarily be the best choice for your product defect case, for example. Before you start searching for a personal injury attorney, think about the top criteria you want the attorney to have before you hire him or her.
- Experience in your practice area: A San Bernardino personal injury attorney who knows how to handle your case will provide more resources, strategies, and support than an attorney with no experience.
- Contingency fee agreements: Most personal injury firms do not charge you out of pocket, instead taking a portion of your settlement as payment.
- A strong track record: While how an attorney settled previous cases will not guarantee a win for you, a history of success proves that an attorney has the ability to win your case.
- Experience practicing law in your state: Personal injury laws can vary from state to state, and you want an attorney who is familiar with and licensed in the region you are pursuing your claim.
Ask Friends and Family for Recommendations
If you know someone who has hired a personal injury attorney in the past, ask him or her about his or her experience working with that attorney. Ask around to other trusted friends and family members to see if they have worked with an attorney in your past. Compile the positive experiences to aid in your research. Crosscheck these attorney names against your criteria and see if you can find any matches.
You can also take advantage of online directories and review sites to find a personal injury attorney. Check the attorney’s website and read about his or her recent case results, experience practicing personal injury law, payment agreements, and the practice areas he or she works with. In addition, look at online legal review sites and read about the experiences of the attorney’s previous clients. While a couple of negative reviews are normal, mostly negative reviews can be a serious red flag.
Narrow Your List
There are multiple personal injury firms and attorneys on the market, so it can be overwhelming to determine who to schedule a consultation with. To help narrow your search, compile a shortlist of three to five firms and attorneys you want to contact. Use your criteria and the results from your online and word-of-mouth investigations to compile this list. At the end of your research, you should have a good sense of the handful of firms who may be a good fit for you.
Take Advantage of the Free Consultation
Most Riverside personal injury lawyers offer free consultation at their offices or at a location convenient to you to discuss your case. While a lawyer may look impressive online, meeting him or her in person can help you determine if he or she is someone you want to work with. When you choose your shortlist of attorneys, schedule consultations with each of them and ask questions about how they will handle your case. Come prepared with documents, information about your case, and a list of questions.
Taking these considerations into account can help you find the right personal injury lawyer soon after your accident. Remember, hiring a personal injury attorney takes research and an understanding of your own personal preferences. Conducting your due diligence before hiring a lawyer can help benefit your claim in the long run.