Choosing a Personal Injury Attorney: The 3 Biggest Mistakes

Don’t make these mistakes when choosing a personal injury attorney.

Obtaining fair compensation for your injuries requires you to choose the right personal injury attorney. Plaintiffs in personal injury lawsuits often overlook this very important aspect of litigation, sometimes with disastrous results. There are three common mistakes people make when deciding on the right attorney that should be avoided if you are to obtain a favorable outcome. Here are some common mistakes you must be aware of in order to choose the right attorney.

Mistake #1: Not choosing an attorney with plenty of trial experience

Many people are surprised to know that not all attorneys have trial experience. This is especially true in the area of personal injury, as a good number of claims are settled out of court. Why is trial experience important? First of all, not all insurance companies are willing to settle out of court. Many will insist on taking cases to trial, even if the cost of doing so is greater than the settlement itself. This tends to be a common practice whenever an insurer is covering a major corporation, as the company may insist on a trial in an effort to deter future lawsuits. As such, obtaining compensation may not be possible unless you actually go to court.

Having a lawyer with trial experience can help you obtain a larger settlement, even if you do not wind up going to court. Although they won’t tell you this, insurance companies tend to know which personal injury attorneys have won huge settlements at trial in the past. They may want to avoid facing those attorneys in a courtroom because they fear huge judgments. This means they are more likely to offer you a larger settlement early on to avoid a court battle.

Mistake #2: Not hiring an attorney with the right type of experience

The law is very complex, and is also constantly evolving. For this reason, it is important to choose an attorney with the right type of experience. Generally speaking, you don’t want the same attorney you would choose to represent you in a criminal matter handling your personal injury case. These are two very different areas of law, both of which require someone with extensive experience in that area.

Keep in mind that not all personal injury attorneys have the same experience either. Some may specialize in automobile or trucking accidents, while others are more adept at handling defective product or medical malpractice claims. When searching for a personal injury attorney, be sure to find out how many similar cases he or she has handled in the past so you will know whether or not you have found someone with the right experience.

Mistake #3: Using an attorney who does not work your case personally

Some personal injury law firms may have you complete a consultation with one attorney, and then hand your case off to one or more other lawyers whom you have never met. This can be problematic because it means the attorney that represents you in negotiations may not have a good working knowledge of your case, and may therefore be at a disadvantage when it comes to defending you.

Attorneys may also rely heavily on paralegals to perform research and prepare cases for court. While it’s acceptable to let paralegals handle some of the caseload, the majority of the work should be done by the attorney. That way, he or she has a direct connection to your case, and is more likely to make obtaining a fair settlement for you a top priority.

One way to avoid these common mistakes is to visit our law firm for a free analysis of your case. Our attorneys all have extensive trial experience in a number of areas, and will remain personally involved in your case from start to finish. To schedule a no cost, no obligation appointment, please contact us at 800.360.7015 today.