If you know the types of questions they may ask ahead of time, you can prepare yourself both mentally and emotionally to respond to them.
A personal injury attorney does not ask questions just to make you relive the horrific moments of your accident – they ask because it will ultimately help you win your case. For that reason, it’s very important to give them all of the details that you can.
Personal injury attorneys don’t ask questions to make you relive the horror, but to help them win your case.
Let’s look at some possible questions they may ask at your first meeting:
You’ll see you can also expect to sign any necessary authorizations so they can go ahead and get started requesting records right away:
wage loss authorization
HIPPA-compliant authorization to obtain medical records
And the lawyer will want copies of your insurance cards, including Medicare or Medicaid.
It’s also important to explain how this incident has affected you, your family, and your everyday tasks – making a list of specifics beforehand can help you talk through it in the meeting.
Pain and suffering (as it is called in legal terms) is one aspect that can prove to be very valuable when your attorney is building your case.
How to decide if this lawyer is right for you
Even though you may feel like you need to commit after your first consultation, you are not tied to choosing the first personal injury attorney you meet. In fact, we recommend meeting with at least a couple to find someone that you feel comfortable with and who you feel can work for the best possible outcome.
If you don’t want to meet in person with each potential lawyer, you can get a good idea of their experience and demeanor through online reviews or a phone call to their office. However, we don’t recommend hiring a personal injury attorney until you’ve had an in-person meeting.
Paperwork and understanding lawyer fees
Once you’ve committed to a particular attorney, he or she will have you fill out a lot of paperwork. It may be a bit overwhelming and feel repetitive, but it’s important to fill it all out accurately to protect you legally.
Also, your lawyer will most likely ask you to sign a medical release form so he or she will have access to all of your medical records.
The last point you’ll need to discuss is what he or she charges for their legal services. Many lawyers will not charge you anything until they have won your case, which is called working on contingency.
There are some lawyers, however, that charge hourly, so finding out the details of how and what they charge in the beginning will prepare you for receiving the bill later. In addition, you’ll want to know details such as how individual expenses are handled.
Enjuris tip: Personal injury attorneys mainly work on a contingency basis and take a percentage of your compensation once they win your case. There can also be some other hidden costs, so it’s important to discuss all of the details of a lawyer’s fees upfront. See negotiating fees with a personal injury lawyer.
Attorneys focus on your case so you don’t have to
After a traumatic experience, the last thing you want to do is spend all of your time and energy fighting for compensation. A personal injury lawyer is there to support you and do all of the hard, legal work so that you can focus on your recovery.
Your primary job following an accident is to take care of yourself and your family.
If you’ve been injured in an accident – whether it involved a car, defective product, or was a work-related incident – meeting with a personal injury lawyer right away will help take the stress of your case off your hands so you can work towards physical and emotional healing.