9 Questions You Need to Ask Before Hiring a San Antonio Injury Lawyer
It’s important to choose your personal injury attorney carefully. Obviously, you want to work with an attorney who is knowledgeable about your type of case, and who has the skills to negotiate on your behalf or argue your case effectively at trial. But, it’s also important to remember that you will likely be working with the lawyer you choose for a long time. Your choice of San Antonio injury attorneys will also impact your experience as the case progresses, and can make the process more or less stressful depending on the fit.
Here are the key questions you should ask during your free consultation with a Texas personal injury lawyer.
Questions about the Injury Attorney’s Experience and Qualifications
1. How long have you been practicing law?
There’s more to the successful practice of law than book learning. While substantive knowledge of the law is critical, experience is the best teacher when it comes to managing a lawsuit, from drafting effective pleadings to arguing motions in court and negotiating with other attorneys. Make sure your attorney has the experience necessary to comfortably manage all aspects of your case.
2. How much of your practice is devoted to personal injury law?
Different areas of law are very different. You want to work with an attorney who has extensive knowledge of the statutes and procedures relevant to your case. And, a lawyer who regularly practices personal injury law in the county where your accident happened will have practical knowledge others may not, such as how particular judges are likely to respond to motions and how willing to settle particular insurance companies may be in a case like yours.
3. How often do you handle cases similar to mine?
While all personal injury cases have some fundamentals in common, a commercial trucking accident case may be much different from a run-of-the-mill car accident case. Make sure your injury lawyer has the specific experience to manage issues that will arise in your specific type of case, such as out-of-state defendants and expert witnesses.
4. How often do you go to trial with personal injury cases?
Expect the percentage to be low. Most personal injury cases settle, and that’s often the best result for the injured party. But, it’s important to have an attorney in your corner who will take the case to a jury if that turns out to be the best option for you. So, ask about the attorney’s trial record to ensure that the law firm is prepared to take the case to trial if necessary.
5. Are you Board Certified in Personal Injury Trial Law?
Attorneys aren’t required to be board certified to handle personal injury cases. But, choosing a board certified attorney gives you the confidence of knowing that the lawyer has experience in that particular area of law, has been recommended by local judges and attorneys, and keeps current with personal injury law through continuing legal education.
6. Where can I see reviews from past clients?
One powerful measure of a personal injury attorney’s skill and commitment to clients is what past clients have to say about their services. Some law firms make client reviews or testimonials available on the firm website, so you may be able to look at these before your initial consultation. If you don’t see client testimonials, be sure to find out where you can find them. Many lawyers have reviews on outside sites such as Avvo.
Questions about How the Personal Injury Law Firm Operates
7. How do you handle fees and costs?
Most personal injury law firms operate on a contingency basis, which means that you aren’t responsible for any attorney’s fees unless you win your case or the case is settled. That helps injury victims pursue compensation without having to come up with money up front. But, not all contingency fees work the same. Make sure to get clear information about what percentage the firm will take, whether it’s different depending on whether the case settles or goes to trial, and who will be responsible for costs such as expert witnesses.
8. How will you keep me up to date about my case?
Personal injury cases often take months–or even longer–to resolve. Waiting and wondering can be stressful, especially if you don’t know what to expect and don’t understand why it’s been so long since you’ve heard anything. Find out whether and when your attorney will send updates, so you can be confident your case is moving forward even when there’s no need for you to be actively involved.
9. Who will be my main point of contact at the law firm and how soon can I expect a response?
Getting bounced from person to person when you’re looking for information can be frustrating. Of course, your attorney won’t always be available, so it’s important to know what to expect. Will there be a particular paralegal or other staff member who is your main point of contact, or will you leave a message for the attorney? What is the normal response time? Having this information in advance will save you the stress of trying to track down the right person to speak with or wondering whether it’s been too long and you should follow up.
Schedule Your Free Personal Injury Consultation Right Now
Talking directly with an attorney is the best way to determine whether you’re a good fit in ways that go beyond technical skill and knowledge. Take advantage of your free consultation to learn more about both aspects: whether the attorney has the experience necessary to handle your case skillfully and whether you will be comfortable providing information, asking questions, and otherwise working with the lawyer.
You can schedule your consultation with an experienced San Antonio injury lawyer at George Salinas Injury Lawyers, we’ll help you build your claim, negotiate a settlement and get you the maximum accident compensation benefits possible. We’ve recovered over $500 million in damages for our clients. The expenses associated with an accident can be high, so you won’t pay us unless we win your case.
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