For people who have been injured due to the negligent actions of another person and decide to sue for their medical bills, finding the right lawyer can be an ordeal. There are lawyers on almost every street in major cities and most have incredible websites, which reveal their outstanding credentials and experience. Further, all personal injury lawyers claim to be the best. So how does a consumer know which personal injury lawyer near me to hire? Below are some tips on how to hire the best personal injury lawyer in Fort Lauderdale.
1. Case Validity
Do you have a valid case? Many people who get injured immediately think of filing a lawsuit. However, a significant number of injuries are not severe enough or the liability may not be clear. Just because a pharmacist gave you the wrong medication and you developed a headache does not automatically mean you have a viable lawsuit. The first thing to do if you have an injury is to consult with a lawyer who can determine the merits of your case. If your injuries are not severe or if you were the one at fault, you may not need a lawyer. In other cases, the liability may not be clear and the lawyer may not accept the case.
The field of personal injury law has become very specialized. Some lawyers only specialize in motor vehicle related injuries or medical malpractice. There might be others who accept all types of personal injury cases, like slips and falls, dog bites, and assault charges. If you have been injured, the first task is to find a lawyer that is specialized to take on your case. For example, if a surgeon left an instrument in your body which later caused a complication and another surgery, you need to seek a medical malpractice lawyer. You would not want a real estate lawyer representing you if you have had a dog bite injury. You need to select a personal injury lawyer that has experience with your injury and/or particular circumstance.
One very common reason why some injured victims do not search out a lawyer is because of the fear of expensive fees. While some personal injury lawyers do charge a fee per hour or a flat rate to take on a personal injury case, many other attorneys work on a contingency basis. What this means is that there is no hefty fee upfront that you have to pay right off the bat. The lawyer only gets paid if you win the case. Hence, you should look for a lawyer who accepts clients on a contingency basis. This approach will not place a financial burden on you at a time that is already filled with stress.
4. Personal compatibility
There are instances when you or the lawyer may not have the same personality and clashes may occur. You may want the lawyer to do things your way and he or she may have other ideas. Hence, it is important to seek a lawyer who has the same goals as you, is easy to get along with, and communicates with you on a timely basis.
5. Referral from friends or family
One of the best ways to hire a lawyer is to get a recommendation from a family member or friend. If these individuals have good things to say about a lawyer, then chances are good that you will also have the same experience. At the end of the day, however, you have to meet the lawyer before you make up your mind. Different people have different experiences and what works for one person may not work for you.
6. Seek experience
In general, if you have a complex personal injury case, then you should be seeking an experienced personal injury lawyer. You do not want someone who has just passed the bar exam handling a complex medical malpractice case. Always ask the lawyer if he or she has experience dealing with similar cases and what have been the outcomes.
7. Past experience
In many cases, you may have had a prior business interaction with the lawyer. You may call the lawyer for assistance. If he or she does not undertake personal injury cases, he or she may be able to refer you to a colleague. Lawyers frequently call each other for referrals and know who is good and who is not. Again, you must meet the lawyer before making up your mind for certain.
8. Check out the website
Most lawyers have websites that reveal their expertise, education, and experience. In addition, many offer online chat services where your case can be evaluated sooner rather than later. This is not a bad way to select a lawyer as you can ask many questions and determine the responses. If you are satisfied, you can move on to the next step of actually meeting the lawyer.
How do I find a personal injury lawyer near me? No matter how you get referred to a personal injury lawyer, the key to getting a qualified and experienced lawyer who meets your needs is physically meeting with the lawyer. Most personal injury lawyers offer a free initial consultation where you bring all your important papers and let the lawyer deem the merits of your case. Write down questions that you would like to ask, such as how long it will take for the case to settle, what amount of compensation you may get, what is the contingency percentage fee, does the lawyer have experience dealing with insurers, is the lawyer okay with going to trial, and so on.
Finally, determine how well the injury lawyer in Fort Lauderdale listens to you, communicates with you, and responds to your questions. If he or she is patient, supportive, and explains the chronology of a potential case well, then you do not have to look any further. In the end, remember, the lawyer works for you and not vice versa.