The list of things to do after a car crash can feel overwhelming. If you’ve been injured, you’re trying to manage your own recovery while handling the bureaucratic and legal details at the same time. A car accident lawyer can help.
Getting legal representation right away can help you get the best possible settlement. You can focus on your health while your lawyer focuses on your case. Learn more about how to find a good car accident lawyer and start benefiting from quality representation.
Look for a Specialist in Car Accident Cases
Finding a good car accident lawyer means finding a specialist. Personal injury lawyers often focus on particular types of cases. A lawyer with extensive experience in car accident cases is more likely to get the outcome you want for your lawsuit.
Choosing a specialist is especially important for complex cases. Specialists are more likely to have the depth of knowledge you need.
Asking your family, friends, and coworkers for recommendations is a good place to start looking for the best car accident lawyer. People will usually be happy to tell you about a personal injury attorney who provided good client service and helped them win above-average compensation.
Recommendations can work the opposite way too. Ask your network if anyone had a poor experience with their lawyer. Knowing which attorneys to avoid can help you sort through your list faster.
Conduct Some Research
Do some research on any lawyer you’re considering. First, look at the California State Bar website. The search feature lets you verify if someone is a licensed attorney in good standing. Attorney databases like Avvo and Martindale Hubbell can give you information about lawyers such as their:
- Practice areas
- Disciplinary records
Online reviews can be a good source of information about personal injury lawyers. Most people wouldn’t buy a product without reading reviews. Finding a good car accident lawyer is the same.
Sites like Avvo are one place to find lawyer reviews. You can also find reviews on Yelp and Google reviews. Keep in mind that a certain number of negative reviews is normal. Even the best lawyers will have a few disgruntled clients.
A negative review lets you see how a lawyer handled the complaint. A prompt, courteous, and appropriate response reflects well on the attorney despite the negative comments.
Speak With the Lawyer Personally
Your online research will help you narrow down your list. The next step is to speak personally with each lawyer you’re considering. Some attorneys offer a free initial consultation so you can make a more informed hiring decision. The meeting gives you the opportunity to get more information about the lawyer’s practice.
Ask About the Lawyer’s Experience
A lawyer with a history of getting appropriate settlements and judgments is more likely to get the same results for you. Ask about the attorney’s track record with situations similar to yours. You can also ask about the lawyer’s record in the courtroom in case your lawsuit goes to trial.
Ask Who Your Primary Attorney Will Be
The lawyer you meet may not end up being your primary attorney. Depending on the firm’s structure, they may plan to assign your case to another member of the team.
Ask who your primary attorney will be. If it’s someone other than the lawyer you’re speaking with, ask to schedule a meeting with the lawyer who’ll be representing you.
Ask About the Lawyer’s Caseload
You can also ask about the lawyer’s caseload. A certain number of cases is good. It shows that the practice is thriving.
Too many cases can mean that a lawyer may not have enough time to devote to your case. Find out how the practice handles the workload to be sure you will get the attention you deserve.
Ask About the Client Response Policy
Lawyers can prioritize their cases in several ways. Ask the attorney what you can expect for response time when you contact them. You can also find out if they prefer communicating by phone, email, or text. Typical strategies include:
- First-in, first-out
- Timeline of future court dates
- Your payment status
Ask for References
Asking a car accident lawyer for references is important. Even if you decide not to contact the references, having them gives you more confidence in the lawyer. Avoid any attorney who will not provide references or seems reluctant to do so.
When you’re finding a good car accident lawyer, you need to compare their fees. Look for a lawyer who works on contingency. This means that they only make money when you get a settlement.
Most personal injury lawyers work for a percentage of the final judgment amount. The percentage is usually higher if the case goes to trial. A trial requires more time and work for the lawyer. In addition to the attorney’s fees, a lawsuit has other fees associated with it, such as:
- Filing fees
- Costs for copies, postage, and other expenses
- Fees for expert witnesses and investigators
Clarify with your lawyer if you’ll need to reimburse these costs. Finally, remember that the lawyer with the lowest fees may not always be the best choice. A more expensive lawyer with more experience or a better track record could get you a better outcome.
How to Find a Good Car Accident Lawyer
Now you know how to find a good car accident lawyer. The process requires some effort, but you’re more likely to get the compensation you deserve.
When you’re looking for the best car accident lawyer in San Diego, Harbor Accident Lawyers will be on your shortlist. We represent victims of car accidents with serious personal injury or wrongful death. We’ll provide you with honest advice and aggressive representation.
Contact us today to schedule a free consultation so we can find the best strategy for you and your recovery.