Top 10 Questions to Ask Your Personal Injury Lawyer
Pursuing financial compensation with a personal injury claim can be a complicated process. The right New Jersey personal injury lawyer can guide you through it with care, respect and compassion for what you are going through. However, not all lawyers are created equal. It is important to ask the right questions to narrow down your choice of attorney and choose the right representation for you.
How Much Experience Do You Have With Personal Injury Cases?
The attorney you hire should have extensive experience in your specific practice area. Look for a personal injury lawyer – not one who is licensed in criminal defense or family law. Narrow your choices down by searching for a personal injury lawyer in New Jersey with experience handling your specific type of case. For instance, there are many different kinds of personal injury cases and lawyers such as New Jersey car accident lawyers or truck accident lawyers.
What Do Your Past Case Results Look Like?
Ask a prospective attorney about his or her past case results. This can give you an idea about the lawyer’s capabilities in terms of achieving fair settlements and verdicts at trial. While past successes do not guarantee a win in your case, they can give you greater confidence in the New Jersey personal injury attorney’s ability to collect the compensation that you need.
Can I See Client Testimonials?
Ask the attorney for client testimonials to determine how satisfied past clients have been with his or her services. Past clients’ experiences with the lawyer and law firm can help you know what to expect. Referrals from friends, family members and other personal injury attorneys are also a good indicator of the lawyer’s skill.
Who Will Be Handling My Case?
Find out if the personal injury lawyer you are speaking with during the consultation is the same person who will be handling your case. Some mill-type personal injury law firms pass cases off to paralegals and associates. You want a lawyer who will dedicate his or her personal attention to your case.
Do You Have the Ability to Take My Personal Injury Case to Trial?
Although the majority of personal injury cases in New Jersey reach settlements and do not need to go to court, hiring a lawyer with trial capabilities can improve the overall outcome of your case. An insurance company will recognize your attorney’s ability to take the case to trial and may be more inclined to offer a higher settlement to avoid a costly court case. Remember that New Jersey is a no-fault state for insurance claims.
Do You Have Time to Take My Case?
Ask if the lawyer is able to dedicate enough time and attention to your personal injury case. If the attorney is currently too busy to take your case, ask if he or she has any referrals to other law firms in New Jersey.
If I Lose the Case, Will I Still Have to Pay?
Do not be afraid to ask directly about attorney’s fees in the beginning. Look for a law firm that offers its services on a contingency fee basis for the least amount of financial risk. With this arrangement, you will pay the lawyer $0 upfront. You will only be charged attorney’s fees if you win your case.
How Much Is My Case Worth?
While no attorney should guarantee a specific case outcome or amount of financial compensation, an experienced attorney will be able to provide an accurate assessment of the strengths and potential weaknesses of your case. This can give you a better idea of what to expect.
How Long Do You Think My Case Will Take?
It may not be possible to give you an accurate estimate of the timeline of your case. However, after a case review, your lawyer should be able to provide general information, such as whether it is likely to reach a settlement or go to court.
Is There Anything I Can Do to Help My Case?
Finally, inquire about how you can contribute to the success of your case. Advice from an attorney may include obtaining copies of accident reports and medical records, keeping communications between you and an insurance company, and following your doctor’s medical advice.