If you need help with your personal injury case, you don’t want to work with just any lawyer. It’s important to find someone who has the experience, specialization, and even the personality that best fits you and your case. You might be wondering how to find a quality personal injury lawyer in your area. Here are the most important things to know to connect with the ideal attorney for your situation.
Look for Relevant Experience
Most lawyers specialize in a certain type of cases, so it’s best to look for someone who focuses on representing victims in personal injury law.
Some attorneys may have the most experience working on these types of cases but representing insurance companies. While they’ll certainly understand personal injury law, they might have an unconscious bias towards the insurance company or not have the have expertise fighting for a victim’s claim.
When you schedule a consultation with a personal injury lawyer, be sure to ask detailed questions about their experience. Examples of the best things to ask about include:
- How long they’ve been practicing
- What percentage of their cases are personal injury
- Who they most often represent in their cases (victims versus defendants like insurance companies or businesses)
- Whether or not they have experience with the insurer involved in your claim
You can also ask for examples of cases they’ve handled similar to yours and how those cases turned out. This can give you a good idea of how they work and what their track record looks like.
Ask Friends and Family
Sometimes people you know can help you find a good personal injury lawyer near you. Call up friends and family members or ask coworkers or other acquaintances in your local community who have worked with a personal injury attorney. If they say good things about working with a particular lawyer, write down their information and call about a consultation.
While personal recommendations can be helpful in your search, keep in mind you’ll need to do a lot more before making your decision. Just because one lawyer worked well for someone you know doesn’t necessarily mean they are right for your case. But it’s certainly a good place to start.
Consider Any Lawyers You Already Know
If you already know an attorney, whether you know them personally or you’ve worked with them in the past, they could be a good option. It depends on their experience in relation to your case.
Even if you work well with them and they are great at what they do, it’s probably not the best fit if they don’t have much experience representing victims in personal injury cases. You need someone who understands the complexity of personal injury claims.
So, if the lawyer you know is not a good fit, ask them to refer you to someone they know and recommend who does work in personal injury. Attorneys refer cases to one another often, so most will know someone who regularly handles your type of case. But like with recommendations from friends or acquaintances, make sure you schedule a consultation with any attorney your lawyer friend recommends before making a decision.
Directories, Reviews, and Referral Services
Besides word of mouth, there are additional tools that help you look for a quality attorney in your area:
- Online directories that allow you to search for attorneys in your area and view their experience, education, and even fee structures
- A simple Google search for “personal injury lawyer near me”
- Online reviews from past clients
- Referral services through a local bar association
While each of these can help guide your search, it’s important to do your own research as well. For example, online reviews don’t always tell the whole story and they depend on the unique experience of each person in relation to their case. In addition, referral services often do minimal screening when recommending a lawyer based on experience.
This is why it’s so crucial to always schedule an initial consultation with personal injury lawyers you’re interested in. Set up a few meetings so you can ask questions and get to know the attorney better yourself.
Scheduling a Consultation
When you show up to the consultation, you should bring information about your case, including copies of all relevant documents like medical bills, the police report, evidence of lost wages, and any communicated with the at-fault party’s insurance company. Be prepared to tell them the details of your case so they can get an idea of what they’d be working on.
Asking about the following factors during your consultation can also help you find the best personal injury lawyer for you.
Ask About Fees
Most personal injury lawyers (like John Foy & Associates) work on a contingency fee basis, which means they don’t get paid you unless they win you money—and their pay comes from a portion of your settlement. Most also offer the consultation for free.
However, find out this information for sure before making any assumptions. When you contact an attorney’s office to schedule the consultation, confirm there is no charge for the consultation. And ask for a breakdown of the lawyer’s fees during the meeting.
Make Sure You Feel Comfortable
This is very important. You should feel comfortable talking to and working with your personal injury lawyer. Pay attention to whether or not they listen to you well and respect your feelings on your case. They should also explain things in a way that makes sense and help you feel confident about the outcome of your case.
The way you and the lawyer interact during the consultation can give you an idea of how it will be working with them throughout your personal injury claim. It should feel like a good fit from the first meeting.
Find Someone Who Wants to Take Your Case
Make sure any personal injury lawyer you choose actually has an interest in taking on your case. There are some situations where a lawyer may be hesitant to take on your case. This could happen if they feel your settlement amount will be too small to cover their overhead costs or they think the odds of winning your case are too small
Ask How Many Cases They’ve Seen to Trial
While most personal injury cases do not proceed to trial, large cases sometimes do—and if an attorney has gone to trial, they will have experience with (and a reputation of taking on) intense cases. Many attorneys advertise that they take on personal injury cases, but they’ve never actually been inside a courtroom. You want someone who doesn’t back down and will fight for the settlement you deserve.
Need a Good Personal Injury Lawyer Near You?
There’s a reason John Foy & Associates’ founder, John Foy, is known as the “Strong Arm.” We have a 20+ year reputation of representing Atlanta victims and their families—and of never taking the side of the insurance companies. We’ve expanded from a small local office to firms all over Georgia. For a FREE consultation, call us today (24 hours a day, seven days a week) at 404-400-4000 or fill out the online form on this page to get started.