Petrov Law Firm | May 25, 2022 | Personal Injury
If you’ve slipped and fallen at the grocery store, been bitten by a dog, had a car accident, or gotten hurt at work, you may be considering filing a personal injury case for damages.
There are a lot of personal injury law firms in North County San Diego, which can make it challenging to find the right lawyer to represent you. The right lawyer will be able to construct a solid case for your claim.
Many attorneys will offer a free consultation regarding your case. Knowing what to expect from this brief meeting and what to bring with you can help you prepare and ensure that you get the most out of the session.
What Does a Free Consultation Mean?
Many lawyers charge by the hour for their time, so your free consultation will be brief. Expect it to last about 30 minutes to an hour. Although you aren’t paying the lawyer, all conversation is still protected by attorney-client privilege, meaning it’s confidential. You can relax and be honest about your situation.
What Happens During the Initial Consultation?
The lawyer will ask you for a brief overview of your case, including what happened, where you were injured, and how badly you’re hurt. It may help to write down the facts and details so that you can organize your thoughts and give an accurate recollection of the events.
They’ll also ask if any other parties were involved, such as in a car collision or for an injury caused by someone else’s actions.
The more details and documentation you have to support your claim, the better chances your lawyer has of constructing a strong personal injury claim for damages.
Bring all documentation of your accident to the consultation, including:
- An accident report, if you were hurt on the job or in a place of business
- Police report
- Witness names and contact information or witness statements
- Any videos or pictures of the accident scene and your injuries
- Medical records of your injuries and treatments
- Documented absence from work because of the accident
These pieces of information can help your lawyer determine who is liable for your accident and the amount of damages to seek.
Questions to Ask Your Lawyer During the Consultation
A free legal consultation is a chance for you and your potential attorney to interview one another. The lawyer will determine whether you have a case, while you evaluate their expertise and experience pursuing cases like yours.
Your lawyer will be your advocate from the initial filing of your claim through negotiations with the other party. If negotiations fail, your lawyer will take the case to court. It’s essential to find someone you click with and trust.
Some common questions to ask your lawyer during a free consultation include:
- Will I have to take my case to court?
- What kind of personal injury claims do you specialize in?
- Have you handled a case like mine before?
- How long do you think the settlement process will take?
- How strong do you think my claim is?
Another thing to ask about upfront is how the lawyer will collect payment. Many personal injury lawyers work on a contingency fee basis, which means that their payment will be a percentage of your settlement or verdict.
The other party is often required to pay for the plaintiff’s legal costs. However, there may be additional costs involved in building your case, such as hiring an investigator or medical expert. Ask what the fees will be and how the payment will be assessed.
Be wary if the lawyer promises a huge settlement or a trial victory. Even with the strongest set of facts, nothing is guaranteed. A good lawyer will help you manage your expectations.
Contact the North County Personal Injury Lawyers at Petrov Law Firm for Help Today
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