If you have been injured in an accident, hiring the right personal injury attorney is crucial, not only for your case but also for your emotional and mental well-being. Accidents and injuries can be traumatic, emotional, and overwhelming events. Each situation is as unique as the individuals involved. And the attorney-client relationship is a cornerstone component of any legal proceeding. Here’s what to look for when choosing the personal injury attorney that is right for you.
Referrals are one of the best ways to find a good attorney.
Talking with family, friends, and co-workers can be a great source of information from a trusted source. Ask if they have ever used a personal injury attorney and about their experience; what worked well, and what they might do differently.
If you have hired an attorney in the past, for divorce, real estate, wills, or probate, and had a positive relationship with that attorney, ask for a referral for a personal injury attorney. Chances are good any attorney they refer you to will have similar values and practices in place.
Reputable directories and non-profit referral services can also be a good place to find a highly respected attorney. The Florida Bar Association has an attorney referral program that will collect details of your case and refer you to a verified, reputable attorney. You should always check with the bar association to ensure the attorney is a member in good standing with the state and local bar association.
You can also use online rating guides to get valuable information on an attorney’s standing. Ratings serve as an objective indicator of a lawyer’s skill and reputation. Some reliable rating programs include:
An attorney with a solid reputation in the legal community is important for several reasons. Knowing your attorney is well respected and trustworthy will give you peace of mind throughout the entire process, from filing a claim with the insurance company, to collecting a settlement.
Personal injury attorneys work with insurance companies on a daily basis. You want an attorney that has good relationships with those companies, knows the insurance adjusters and is experienced negotiating with them. They will leverage that relationship to get the best possible results for you and your case.
A personal injury claim may seem simple and straightforward at the start. But determining liability, the exact extent of damages, both financial and non-financial, can be difficult at times. When looking for an attorney to represent you, make sure they have sufficient resources to handle your case. In the event your case goes to trial, there can be extensive records and documentation your attorney will need to request from medical providers, insurance companies, and the other party. They will need to review everything they receive and follow up as needed. Your attorney will also need to provide documentation. There are strict rules for requesting and receiving evidence. Missing just one date for requesting or providing documentation can be detrimental to your case. And of course, your attorney will need to file legal papers with the court. These filings will determine if your case is successful or not. Make sure you hire an attorney that has the time to dedicate to your case, and a competent support staff, to ensure everything runs smoothly.
Once you’ve gotten recommendations, checked ratings for the potential attorneys, and finished your research, you should narrow down your options to three or four candidates. Call to schedule an appointment to review your case and prepare a list of questions prior to the meeting.
Making the Decision
Here are just a few things to consider when making that final decision of who to hire to represent you in a personal injury matter.
Was the attorney on time, attentive to you, and truly engaged in the discussion? We often think that a busy attorney means they must be a great attorney. But if the attorney is too busy to pay attention to you and your case, they are not a great attorney for you!
Were all your questions answered to your satisfaction? This does not mean that the attorney can give you definitive answers to every question you have. But were they able to provide you with answers, and if they are not able to provide an exact answer, are you comfortable with the response they provided? For example, be wary if you get an exact dollar amount if you ask how much you can expect to receive for your injury. No attorney can tell you that. But they can give you a range of what they have recovered for other clients in similar cases.
Do you feel comfortable and confident with this attorney? After doing all the research, talking with lots of people, meeting with various attorneys, most people choose their attorney based on feelings. The relationship with your attorney can last months or even years, and you share very personal information with this person. So perhaps the biggest consideration is whether you felt comfortable and confident.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney
At Battaglia, Ross, Dicus & McQuaid, P.A., we listen to you and want to hear your story!
When you contact us, we will take the time to get to know you and understand all the ways your life has been affected by your accident. We pride ourselves on being empathetic, compassionate, and caring. This is just one of the reasons we are Florida’s top-rated personal injury attorneys – providing personalized legal advice addressed to meet your individual needs.
From the first call, you will know that we will be there with you, helping you to navigate through what can be a complex, difficult, and emotionally challenging time. We strive to provide you with all the information and resources you need. We are dedicated to making your life easier. From start to finish, we will promptly answer all your questions and provide the best legal advice, so you can make informed decisions about your future.
We build trust through open, timely communication, and straightforward legal advice. We are an award-winning, established personal injury law firm, fighting for our clients for over 60 years, and have recovered more than $145 million in awards. Contact us today and we will fight to get the results you deserve.