We all make mistakes, but some mistakes are more expensive than others. When looking for a personal injury lawyer, avoid the following mistakes:
- Not hiring a Specialized Personal Injury Lawyer
Don’t hire a lawyer just because he or she won the biggest spousal RRSP withdrawal case. Such a lawyer has more experience in tax issues but may never have represented a soul in a personal injury case. This is an important consideration because specialty lawyers build credibility with defense attorneys, judges and insurance adjusters improving your chances of winning a case.
Speaking of specialty, the best personal injury lawyer has to be a member of a professional association. Don’t overlook that fact.
- Going for a lawyer who isn’t interested in going to trial
You need to ask the number of cases the lawyer has represented in court or trial. A lawyer who settles in boardrooms will likely end up with a lower settlement because the insurance company knows he or she doesn’t pose a big threat. The lawyer will also ask for high fees.
Even if the lawyer has years of experience, he or she should show proof of the number of cases they have represented in court.
- Hiring a senior lawyer who won’t represent you in court
Many senior lawyers secure cases then delegate the cases to their assistants. This is a huge risk because you need an experienced lawyer on the negotiation table.
- Hiring a lawyer, you aren’t comfortable with
When looking for a lawyer, choose someone you are comfortable with. Even when strapped for cash, you will still find a lawyer you can afford who you are comfortable with.
- Hiring a lawyer after one phone call
Even though it is possible to feel like the lawyer is worth your time and money after one phone call, it isn’t the right thing to do. You should rush into making decisions. Instead, you should ask for a personal interview with the lawyer before agreeing to receive their representation.
A one-on-one interview lets you know if you are comfortable with the lawyer if he or she is a good listener if the lawyer has your interests at heart and if the lawyer is knowledgeable/ skillful to handle the case. A meeting also lets you ask the hard questions that pertain to the case, and you’ll get to judge the honesty of the answers.
- Hiring a lawyer who asks for payment upfront
The best lawyer will offer consultation and representation without asking for payment upfront. This is because they advance their services then get their litigation fees from the settlement fees. Such lawyers are the ones that fight for your case, and in most cases, you get a good settlement.
Don’t get a lawyer from your insurance company, research for potential lawyers and always choose a lawyer you get along with.