We’ve spoken before about the mistake of not taking lawyers seriously enough. Sometimes we still don’t take them seriously enough even when we do need their help. If you’ve been in a car accident, read this. You need to make sure you get a decent lawyer who won’t waste your time. Here’s how.
Take the time to do your research
You might be tempted to get a lawyer as soon as humanly possible. However, this is something that you’ll want to take your time with. Whatever your specific problem is, make sure you do plenty of research. There are loads of websites out there that feature (informal) legal advice for pretty much any case.
Make sure you’re not taking the wrong steps before you even call a lawyer up! It’s possible the car insurance companies will be able to come to a satisfactory compensation agreement without lawyers being involved.
One of the great things about modern lawyers is that they usually offer free consultations. This is absolutely something you should be taking advantage of. But how do you use that free consultation effectively? You have a limited amount of time to get a lot of information.
You need to find out what their success rate is. Not all car accidents are the same – have these guys dealt with similar cases before? Who will the man point of contact will be? What approach will be taken? All of this is crucial information when you’re shopping around for lawyers.
Make sure they’re an auto accident lawyer!
As much as some people may like to say otherwise, lawyers aren’t some homogenous mass. They all have particular sets of skills. Many will be able to work in all sorts of cases. But it’s best for you to work with a law firm who have a lot of experience in auto accidents. Some will choose to go with a catch-all personal injury attorney, but I’d probably go specifically with an auto accident attorney. Extensive experience in auto accidents is guaranteed that way.
Checking the feedback
A law firm’s website will usually have a bunch of testimonials from previous clients. It’s important for you to read through these. But it’s also important to see if you can fact-check them! While anonymity might not make this possible, there will be some testimonials that refer to big and specific cases.
You can perform an Internet search to make sure the cases in question actually took place! (Car accidents and resulting legal action is sometimes reported in local news.) Aside from that, you should try to find previous clients or online review websites. These independent sources can help you make a more informed decision regarding the law firm’s practices.
Considering the price
A lot of people are attracted to the whole “no win, no fee” policy. After all, how could that possibly go wrong? If you’re strapped for money, then it may seem like that’s your only option. But you shouldn’t use the existence of such a policy as the only deciding factor. The quality of the lawyer is still more important. (Besides, if you do win, the fees can be absolutely extortionate! Make sure you discuss what the fees will be – get it all in formal writing.) You should always be open to other ways of being able to afford a good lawyer.