You have been injured, and it was not your fault. Maybe you were involved in a motor vehicle collision; maybe a product on which you rely, failed catastrophically; maybe the thoughtless actions of another have led to you being hurt.
Regardless of how you were injured, you are suffering, and you are looking to hire a lawyer. Choosing a personal injury lawyer can be daunting—the task of sifting through advertisements promising a quick buck; anonymous reviews from strangers; and flashy websites; to help you make an informed decision, can feel overwhelming, even under ideal circumstances. To help you make a decision that satisfies your specific needs, here are some recommendations that may be helpful in choosing a personal injury lawyer.
Why Should You Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer?
The first question you may ask yourself is “why hire a lawyer at all?”
While it may be tempting to negotiate the world of insurance claims, alone, to save a few dollars, you will be dealing with complex legal arguments, contracts, strict deadlines, and insurance companies who make money explicitly by refusing to pay out claims. A personal injury lawyer works for you: they file your paperwork, navigate the complex legal system, pay out disbursements to cover incidental costs, during the duration of your lawsuit, and ensure that you get every cent to which you are entitled.
How Do I Choose a Personal Injury Lawyer?
Like any decision, choosing a personal injury lawyer requires some research. Here are some important things to consider when selecting a personal injury lawyer:
- Personal Recommendations / References – Like choosing a doctor, or any other professional, a good first step is asking for personal recommendations from people whom you trust—which may save you a significant amount of time in a critical situation;
- Professional Standing – Ensure that any personal injury lawyer you are researching is in good professional standing. In Alberta, the Law Society of Alberta, an organization that regulates the province’s legal profession by promoting and enforcing a high standard of professional and ethical conduct, maintains a searchable directory that provides information on the citations, disciplinary history, and reports related to specific lawyers;
- References and Testimonials – While sketchy semi-anonymous reviews of any professional are available with a simple internet search, the testimonials and references included on a lawyer’s website are held to higher standards;
- Expertise – Aside from the number of years and area of practice, determine if the lawyer you are researching has:
- trial and/or negotiation experience;
- active membership in legal societies;
- provided expertise or presented at professional lawyer associations;
- has taught or educated other lawyers; and
- has received referrals from other lawyers for complex, unusual, or difficult cases.
- Ask Questions – Personal injury lawyers often offer free consultations without obligation; this time can be used to ask questions including:
- whether or not they have handled cases like yours, and the outcomes;
- the strengths and weaknesses of your specific case;
- what compensation you may receive;
- how long your case may take to settle; and
- what their fees are set and subsequently collected.
- Relationship – Regardless of how qualified and experienced a lawyer may be, one important consideration—if not the most important—is your relationship with them. A personal injury lawyer is your advocate, so it is vital that you trust them, feel comfortable with them, and can communicate with them, in an honest, open manner. Depending on the specifics of your case, you may be spending a lot of time with your lawyer—and no one wants to put their faith in someone whom they do not respect.
Choosing the right personal injury lawyer for you, and your needs, is essential for ensuring that you can live your life – on your terms.
If you, or someone you love, have suffered due to the actions, or negligence of another, the team at Pipella Law is here to help. We will represent your interests long-term, regardless of the challenges tomorrow may bring. If you have questions, or concerns about legal representation, please give us a call, to book a free consultation with our personal injury team. We are dedicated to advocating on your behalf and operate on a contingency fee basis—you will not pay until we obtain the settlement you deserve.
You don’t have to suffer. We are here to help.