Did you know that accidental injuries are one of the top three causes of death in the US? Every second, an American is accidentally injured and every three minutes, an American is killed by a preventable accident.
If you or a loved one has suffered from a preventable injury, you may be entitled to compensation. Knowing what you deserve, though, is difficult. This is where a personal injury lawyer comes in. For some tips for searching for personal injury lawyers in Nevada, read on.
1. Ask For Referrals
If you watch TV, chances are you see a commercial for a personal injury lawyer fairly often. But how do you know how effective they really are? This is where word of mouth becomes important.
Asking your family members and friends for any personal referrals they have for personal injury attorneys is one of the best ways to find someone who can effectively represent you.
Online social media groups that are local are another good source for referrals (or warnings of lawyers to stay away from).
2. Do Your Research
Don’t just take someone else’s word for it. Once you go through your references and reviews from family and friends, you should do your own research as well.
Read Google reviews, search for any negative reviews about them, and check to see if they have any complaints or have been disciplined by your state’s bar association.
3. Focus on Their Experience
Finding an attorney who has experience with your type of case is extremely important during the negotiation and settlement process. Just as you wouldn’t want a neurologist to deliver your baby, you don’t want a real estate lawyer handling your personal injury case.
Even if they have personal injury experience, that doesn’t necessarily mean they have experience with your type of case. There are unique areas that aren’t practiced by all personal injury attorneys, such as maritime law or aviation accidents. Make sure your attorney is experienced with your type of case, especially if it’s a unique area.
You also want to learn about their success rates. They could have lots of experience with your type of case, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are successful experiences.
4. Find an Attorney With Trial Experience
While many personal injury cases result in a negotiated settlement between you and the insurance company, there are instances where you cannot agree on a settlement amount. In this situation, the case might have to go to trial.
Not all personal injury lawyers have trial experience, and you don’t want to find out when it’s time to take the case to trial that your lawyer is inexperienced. Insurance companies could be aggressive and refuse to settle if they know your attorney doesn’t have experience with trials.
5. Hire an Attorney With a Good Reputation
Choosing an attorney with a good reputation will help boost your chances to get the compensation that you are entitled to. An attorney who is known to resolve cases fairly and quickly will make insurance companies more likely to work with them.
If the case goes to trial, an attorney with a positive reputation also positions you to have the best outcome, as judges and juries often respond to attorneys more favorably if they have a good reputation and do things the right way.
6. Hire an Attorney With a History of Large Settlements
An attorney won’t be able to guarantee you a certain amount (and you should steer clear of any attorney who does), but an experienced personal injury attorney who has experience with similar cases will be able to give you an idea of what you can expect.
Knowing what kinds of past settlements or damage awards from a trial that your attorney can get will help you know how successful they might be in your case. Ask them to show you the cases they have won and how much compensation their client got from either a settlement or damages awarded by a jury.
7. Interview Them
Before making a decision on which attorney to hire, you should interview them. After doing all of your research, create a shortlist of potential attorneys you want to speak to.
Most attorneys offer free case consultations. Take advantage of these to ask them a series of questions that will give you a better feel of their experience, effectiveness, and techniques. Questions to ask include:
- How much experience do you have with my type of case?
- What kind of settlement can I expect?
- How long will the case take to resolve?
- Will you be the only lawyer handling my case?
- What is my role in the case?
- Will the case have to go to trial?
- How do you prefer to communicate?
- How long should I expect to wait for a response from you?
- What resources do you have available?
If you don’t like their answers to these questions, or if they can’t adequately answer them, you may want to exclude them from further consideration.
8. Discuss Fees
One of the most important parts of your case consultation is understanding the fees. Most personal injury lawyers do not cost you anything unless they win your case. You’ll need to make sure that this is their process and understand what their fees are if you win.
Typically, you can expect to pay about 1/3 of your settlement to your attorney. There may be other fees as well, such as expert witnesses or special medical exams. Be sure to discuss who pays for these, as these costs will typically be upfront costs before the settlement is obtained.
9. Go With Your Gut
Ultimately, you want to go with your gut when choosing a personal injury attorney. These types of cases might drag on for a while, so you want to be able to work with your attorney for the long haul.
If you don’t think they have your best interests in mind and don’t feel comfortable working with them, move on to the next attorney.
Finding Personal Injury Lawyers in Nevada
If you find yourself in need of personal injury lawyers in Nevada, use these pointers to find an attorney who will fight for you and help you get what you are entitled to. A good personal injury lawyer will look out for your best interests and work to get you the largest settlement possible.
The attorneys here at Sweet Law are experienced in personal injury cases. Contact us today for a free case consultation.