Auto accidents are stressful because you have to file insurance claims, handle car repairs, and deal with any injuries you sustain. Insurance companies don’t want to pay a large settlement, so you might experience frustration that your compensation doesn’t cover the expenses you’ve accrued.
Instead of giving up and accepting the financial burden, you should get professional help. Auto accident lawyers know how to negotiate with insurance companies and anyone else at fault to get the settlement you deserve. Knowing what to consider when hiring a lawyer will help streamline the process.
What to consider when hiring a lawyer
The best way to look for a lawyer is to ask around. Talk to your friends, family, and coworkers to see if anyone has experience with an auto accident attorney. Ask questions about what they liked about the lawyer and how they felt about the outcome. You can also post on local message boards and social media communities to find someone in your area.
If you don’t know anyone who’s used an auto accident lawyer, check out reviews online. You can Google lawyers in your area or look them up through the American Bar Association. Once you find a lawyer, search their name and read any client reviews and news articles in the results.
Many lawyers will try to convince you they can handle an auto accident claim, but there are different law specialties. While a professional can help, you want someone with auto accident experience. Talk to several lawyers about their experience in court and their average settlements for clients.
Sometimes working with a beginning lawyer can entail perks. They have passion and dedication and will fight for you to start a positive track record of cases. They also often work under experienced attorneys who can give them advice.
When you meet with an auto accident attorney, they’ll give you an overview of their strategy. For example, they might look at the police report before contacting the other driver’s insurance company to negotiate. A lawyer knows what to look for in the details that help prove the other driver’s fault. Many insurance companies will pay a larger settlement to prevent a lawsuit.
Getting an outline of what strategy the lawyer will take to get your compensation can give you a vote of confidence regarding their skill and competence. You’ll understand how they’ll fight for you and what they might need from you to start the process.
Ask your lawyer about their communication style. Some prefer to work hard behind the scenes and update you with new developments. Others keep notes of their activity and send you weekly updates. Choose how involved you want to be and find a lawyer who satisfies those needs.
You should know how to contact your lawyer via email or phone. You don’t want to wait for them to return a call when you have a simple question. Have an open conversation during your attorney interview to know what to expect when communicating with your lawyer.
Fees always factor into hiring an attorney. You want to know that you’re not going to blow your savings to pay for a lawyer that doesn’t deliver results. Some lawyers have a flat fee for specific cases, while others charge an hourly rate and require a retainer of a certain amount before they start work.
Most personal injury lawyers work on contingency, which means you only pay them if you get a favourable settlement. They’ll take a certain percentage of the compensation, but you don’t have to pay anything upfront. Ask your lawyer about their fees and payment schedule before you sign an agreement.
It’s tough to navigate the claims and paperwork after an auto accident, but you don’t have to do it alone. Hire an experienced lawyer by considering the factors above. If you ask about these qualifications during your attorney interview, you’ll know you’re in good hands and will get the settlement you deserve.
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