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Car Wreck Lawyer – What to look for when hiring one

Trusted Content
Legally reviewed by:
Erik Abrahamson
April 6, 2018
April 6, 2018 | Car Accidents

Getting into an auto accident is often a very traumatic experience, but, once things calm down, you realize there are things you need to do to react to that situation. Of course, your primary concern is to seek out medical attention for yourself and anyone who was with you. Next, you may need to hire an attorney, but, with so many options, how do you choose the right lawyer to handle your case?

The car wreck lawyers at Abrahamson & Uiterwyk will provide you with a free, no-obligation consultation if you or a loved one has suffered due to the negligence of another. Call 800-538-4878, we are available 24/7

When and Why to Hire an Attorney

Unless your accident was a minor incident that only ended up causing a few dents and nothing more than some bruises in the way of injuries, you’ll likely need expert legal representation. FindLaw points out that it often takes an experienced personal injury attorney to haggle with insurance adjusters and to pursue adequate compensation. Often, the adjuster will be eager to save the insurance company as much money as possible, which means they’ll offer a settlement far below that which you will need to pay for your medical bills, property damages, and loss of work. Additionally, you deserve compensation for the pain and suffering the accident caused, which may not even be considered in an initial settlement offer. Suppose your injuries will take months to heal and require extensive physical therapy. A settlement should also pay for that, as well. Only a lawyer experienced in dealing with auto accidents will have the experience the will to negotiate a fair settlement for you. In the event the insurance company isn’t willing to negotiate, you’ll already have an attorney with knowledge about your case to handle a potential civil suit, as well. This is why it’s important to hire a lawyer as early in the process as possible. They will be better prepared to represent you at trial and he’ll be on hand to make sure you’re not pressured into accepting an unfair or unreasonable settlement offer.

Things to Consider in Hiring an Auto Accident Attorney

  1. Free Consultations – As Avvo points out, your initial consultation with any personal injury lawyer is always free. This gives the lawyer a chance to assess your case and determine if he can help. It also gives you the chance to get to know the attorney and discover if you feel he’s the right person to represent you.
  2. Experience – Hiring an experienced injury lawyer is important for a number of reasons. To begin, this doesn’t just mean someone generally experienced with litigation, though that is important. You’ll want an attorney who has successfully represented plaintiffs in auto accident cases, specifically. This is because an experienced auto accident lawyer is familiar with the insurance companies and may be better able to negotiate a good settlement for you through his familiarity with insurance company representatives and court officials.
  3. Some Cases Don’t Go to Court – If an attorney is focused on a trial, you might want to look elsewhere. Since the lawyer’s first responsibility is to serve your best interests, he should first be inclined to attempt to negotiate a settlement. A good attorney will at least try to settle out of court. Sometimes, insurance companies are willing to settle, because they know a civil trial will be much more costly.
  4. Lawyer’s Fees – Before you hire an attorney, you should fully understand his or her fees. The lawyer works on a contingency basis, which helps clients who may not have the money up front to pay for a lawyer. Instead, the attorney gets a contingency or a percentage of the settlement or judgment in your case. It’s important to understand what this percentage will be in advance and to find out if the contingency covers all costs associated with the case.
  5. Be Wary of Guarantees – No lawyer can guarantee you a specific settlement, so, if you’re in contact with a lawyer that does offer such promises, run the other way. There’s no way to know how a case will go, so a lawyer promising a high settlement is likely just trying to get your business. A reputable attorney may give you his opinion about what your case will be worth, but he’ll also explain that other variables may affect the outcome of your case.
  6. There Are No Quick Fixes – Most auto accident cases take time, even if the case doesn’t go to court. First, your lawyer will have to investigate the facts of the accident and interview witnesses, just as the insurance adjuster will be doing. Additionally, negotiating with an insurance company will likely be a long process in itself. If an agreement can’t be reached, it will be necessary to file the civil complaint and request a court date, which can take up some time.

In the end, you’ll have to trust your own judgment in choosing an attorney to handle your auto accident case. By considering these points and asking your attorney plenty of questions, you can get a better idea about his or her qualifications and experience.

The car wreck lawyers at Abrahamson & Uiterwyk will provide you with a free, no-obligation consultation if you or a loved one has suffered due to the negligence of another. Call 800-538-4878, we are available 24/7

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