Before you even start doing searches it will pay off to have a good idea of the qualities and terms you are looking for in a car accident attorney. This may differ a little according to your case, your personality, your area of the country, even.
These questions will give you a framework for a list you can check off:
Ok, now you should have an idea of the sorts of things you'll be keeping in mind as you look at various law firms and attorneys.
Next find where to look to start putting together a shortlist of the best car accident attorneys, so you can begin with a strong pool of potential candidates.
There are several ways to find the names of experienced personal injury lawyers. Once you have gotten several names and numbers, you should talk to each of them and check out their level of experience and case results.
Places to look for good car accident attorney referrals include:
Talk to people in your personal and work network. See who has worked with a personal injury attorney before, preferably also on a car accident case. If you get a good referral to an attorney, put him or her on your list.
But do not decide to go with an attorney just based upon someone else's word.
Different people will have different reactions to an attorney. You want to talk to the attorney personally and discuss your case, then make a decision.
If you have a real estate attorney friend, you can ask them if they have a recommendation for a personal injury attorney who could help you with your car accident case. Most experienced attorneys will know other good attorneys outside their area of practice.
It is very common for lawyers to refer business to each other, so this can be a great way to find a good attorney.
Enjuris has assembled a comprehensive Law Firms Directory that you can use to find a local personal injury attorney. When you click on your state, a list of personal injury attorneys will appear who have registered with our website.
When you click on one of the attorneys, a brief profile of that legal firm will appear with their contact information. Some of our featured attorneys have an Ask a Question feature that allows you to provide brief information about your personal injury case. (Let us know if you don't find a good attorney in your state on our site and we may be able to help.) It is up to you to connect with that attorney and to decide if he or she is the attorney you want to represent you.
Most state and local bar associations have a legal referral service where the names of attorneys licensed in the state are listed by specialty.
For example the Texas State Bar has a Lawyer Referral & Information Service that can help you find an attorney that matches your type of case and finances.
Note that the quality of a particular referral service can vary widely. Some of these services will conduct careful screening of attorneys, and list only the most experienced and successful ones.
Other referral services may list any attorney who is in good standing in that state.
Before you choose an attorney through a referral service, find out what its qualifications are for including a personal injury attorney on their list.
Be prepared to be turned down by a few attorneys.
Some attorneys may turn down your case if it is below a certain dollar amount. They may also say no if proving fault is dicey.
See 10 reasons a personal injury attorney may turn down your case for a peek into the perspective of a car accident attorney who is evaluating your case.
Sit down with the attorney and talk about your personal injury claim. When you do so, you should bring documents such as:
Most attorneys will not charge you for this initial consultation. If the attorney wants to charge you just for the first meeting, you may want to find a different attorney.
After you talk about your accident claim, here are some important questions to ask:
So you've talked about your car accident case. You've chatted with the attorney about your dealings with the insurance company. Now you want a feel for how much the lawyer thinks your case is worth. Also super important is how difficult it might be to get the insurance company to cough up that amount.
At this point, you should let the attorney know what you want. Is it to:
It's key to make sure you both are on the same page strategy wise. So figure out how badly you need the money. Really bad, so you'll settle for less? Or you have cash in the bank and you are willing to wait for more money?
After you have settled on an attorney, you still have work to do. You need to have a clearly understood fee agreement. And keep in contact with the attorney to know how your car accident case is going.
So that's how you can find a good attorney to represent you for your car accident case. Please let us know if you have any pointers to add, or tell our readers how it went for you. Talk to us here.
Remember to check out our Personal Injury Law Firms Directory to begin shortlisting potential car accident attorneys for your case.