How do I choose an attorney?
A variety of resources, such as community and bar associations, or friends and associates, can offer referrals. Contact the attorney for an initial consultation, which is your opportunity to interview the attorney to see if he or she is the one you want representing you in your case.
During the consultation, you are welcome to ask general questions about the attorney’s experience, time and fees, and possible remedies to the problem.
At the consultation, the attorney needs to learn enough information about your situation to determine if he or she can help you, or should refer you to someone with more expertise in your area. Since the initial consultation may take an hour or less, you should plan to give the attorney the most important details about your problem so he or she can help prioritize your legal needs. Use this list to begin planning for your consultation.
- Organize your thoughts. Write down your story for yourself, in your own words, before meeting with your attorney.
- Collect and bring to the consultation all important documents, receipts, and letters that may affect your case.
- Have a list of names and dates so the attorney has an idea of who is involved and when your legal issues began.
- The attorney knows which questions to ask to narrow your legal issues; be sure to give clear answers.
- Tell the truth, even if you think the details of your answers may hurt your case.
- Do NOT exaggerate the facts or details; tell your story just the way it happened.
- It is natural to feel very emotional about your situation. But it is important to stay focused on the facts and circumstances of the event, because facts are what your attorney must work with in court.
- Determine how comfortable you feel with the attorney you meet with in consultation.
How do I choose an attorney who specializes in personal injury?
Personal injury cases are serious matters. They can involve injury, permanent disability, or even death. Victims depend on the financial damages they are awarded to cover their medical treatments, replace permanently lost income, and compensate for their pain and suffering. Without a qualified, experienced personal injury attorney, their chances of receiving fair compensation may not happen.
That is why it is imperative that, if you have been a victim of personal injury, you choose the right personal injury attorney to represent you. Here are a few things to consider when choosing a personal injury attorney:
Choose an attorney experienced in personal injury law.
If you have been injured, it is vitally important to choose an attorney most familiar and experienced in personal injury law. Your attorney should be able to accurately assess the merits of a personal injury case, approximate its monetary value, and determine the best strategy for pursuing it. He or she should also have extensive experience in the field. And because landmark cases change personal injury law regularly, you should choose an attorney who keeps current with the latest developments in personal injury law.
Mark R. Schwartz has 30 years of experience in the field of personal injury law.
Choose an attorney experienced in dealing with insurance companies.
Did you know that more lawyers work for insurance companies than are in private practice? Insurance company corporate lawyers work toward one goal: to pay you the least amount possible on an injury to save money for their employer.
An inexperienced personal injury attorney dealing with experienced insurance company lawyers may be at a disadvantage dealing in these negotiations. So choosing a personal injury lawyer with a proven track record of successful negotiations with insurance companies is imperative.
Mark R. Schwartz has successfully negotiated with insurance companies for 30 years.
Choose an attorney with trial experience.
Many personal injury claims can be settled out of court. But sometimes, what the insurance company offers in a settlement does not match the amount of injury and suffering that a client has experienced. Therefore, your attorney may want to take your case to court. This is a very expensive and emotional process, and most attorneys will want to weigh what your case is worth versus the cost of going to trial.
Mark R. Schwartz's 30 years of trial experience provides his clients with expert judgment in weighing whether or not cases should go to trial.