Choosing the Right Personal Injury Lawyer: 4 Red Flags to Watch Out For
If you were injured as a result of someone else’s negligence, it’s important to speak with a lawyer about your rights, your legal options and potential compensation. The problem is that most people don’t personally know a lawyer. So their first call may be to a lawyer just because they saw the firm advertising on television.
While the vast majority of personal injury lawyers are honest, hard-working professionals, here are some tips to keep in mind when choosing the right attorney for your case:
1. Avoid lawyers that promise big bucks!
Most experienced personal injury lawyers will be careful about throwing out numbers in the initial interview, especially when it comes to how much money you stand to make from the case. Because, let’s be honest, it’s never certain. Think about it; two of the big factors that determines how much compensation you are entitled to is how long your injuries last and how your injuries impact your ability to work or do your normal household activities. Both of these things are difficult to predict early on in a case.
Attributing a monetary value to a case before thoroughly researching it should raise a red flag, as should a lawyer that only talks about how much money a case is worth. Your health and future should be the primary concerns.
2. Beware of lawyers that promise your case will settle before trial.
It is true that most personal injury cases settle before trial. But that doesn’t necessarily mean your case will settle. An experienced lawyer will evaluate and reassess the evidence at every step of the litigation in order to determine if the case can or should be settled. While there are some good reasons why a personal injury lawyer may settle your claim before trial, it’s not acceptable for a personal injury lawyer to always avoid trial. In fact, it’s so important that we created another list about it: Ways to Find the Best Trial Lawyer in Nova Scotia.
3. Watch Out for Guarantees.
Guarantees make us feel good; they let us make choices with the perceived security that if anything should go wrong, we have a guarantee we can rely on.
While some personal injury cases appear easy or obvious, there is no way any lawyer can guarantee that you will receive a certain amount of compensation.
But there are two things we can guarantee:
First, we can guarantee that the facts of your personal case are unique and different from every other personal injury claim that has ever been filed and those unique facts are what will determine what you are entitled to receive.
Second, we are so confident in the information and services we provide to our personal injury clients that we offer a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee. If you decide you want to hire us for your personal injury claim, and we agree to represent you, we provide a written satisfaction guarantee! There is no law firm anywhere in Atlantic Canada (or the rest of Canada for that matter) that we are aware of that offers a similar guarantee in writing!
4. An attorney should provide documentation.
Typically the money awarded to a client is also used to pay the lawyer’s fees, any expert fees, and any other subrogation interests, for example disability insurance companies like Blue Cross.
It’s very important that you are provided with documentation that explains exactly how the money is allocated. Be very wary if a lawyer refuses to provide this, or you’re unclear about what the documentation says.
Choosing the Right Personal Injury Lawyer
Almost all lawyers I’ve worked with are trustworthy professionals who have their clients’ interests at heart. However, as a client, it’s important that you understand these warning signs before you decide which lawyer to hire to represent you in your personal injury claim.