During your first meeting with a personal injury attorney, you should be prepared to answer all kinds of questions. After all, your lawyer will have to evaluate the facts of the case to determine the most strategic way to proceed.
It’s important to remember, however, that the initial consultation is just as important for you as it is for your legal team. For example, you will want to confirm that you’ve chosen the right attorney to take your case, and you can do this by asking questions of your own.
Let’s take a look at some of the most important questions to ask during your initial consultation with a personal injury lawyer:
1. What Is Your Fee Structure?
Be wary of firms that offer to handle your case for a low, flat rate. Legal proceedings are inherently unpredictable, and if a dispute or complication arises along the way, a lawyer working for a flat rate might not be inclined to clock in the extra hours needed to resolve the matter in your favor.
Most reputable personal injury firms work for contingency fees and, in some circumstances, on an hourly basis. In contingency fee arrangement, the fee comes out of the final settlement or verdict. And if the case doesn’t yield a recovery, the client isn’t responsible for any attorney fees at all.
2. Have You Handled Cases Similar to Mine?
Personal injury law is an incredibly broad practice area that encompasses everything from medical malpractice to motor-vehicle collisions. As such, you shouldn’t assume that the lawyer you’re meeting with is well-versed in cases like yours. After all, winning a case involving a defective product calls for much different strategies than prevailing in a nursing home negligence claim.
3. What Is My Case Worth?
An attorney who practices with integrity will never promise to secure a sizable settlement or verdict for a client. At the end of the day, there’s no way to guarantee any given case will be resolved in the plaintiff’s favor.
During the initial consultation, though, your lawyer should be able to discuss the various factors that might influence the potential value of your claim. Be sure to bring along any relevant receipts, bills, invoices, and paystubs. If you’ve been tracking your recovery in a personal injury journal, bring it to the initial consultation, as well. Its entries may help your attorney develop a more compelling argument for non-economic damages such as pain and suffering.
In South Carolina personal injury cases, potentially recoverable damages include:
- Medical bills;
- Lost income and benefits;
- Property repairs;
- Home care;
- Replacement services;
- Home modifications needed to accommodate any permanent disabilities;
- Mental anguish;
- Loss of enjoyment in life; and
- Pain and suffering.
Discuss Your Claim with a Personal Injury Lawyer in Spartanburg
If you were seriously hurt because another party failed to act with reasonable care, contact Hodge & Langley Law Firm to find out if you have grounds for a claim. Our compassionate team of attorneys has nearly 50 years of combined experience in the legal field. Call 864-585-3873 or use our Online Contact Form to set up a free consultation with a personal injury attorney in Spartanburg.