Car accidents are stressful. Whether you are injured or not, you may be facing legal challenges, and if you are injured, you may have difficulty getting the money you need to pay for your repairs, medical treatment and even loss of wages. Rather than searching for “Fort Collins accident attorney” online and choosing the first lawyer on the page, take time to choose the attorney who will get you the best settlement.
Education And Certifications
Although many great lawyers do not have ivy league educations, their law firms should have strong reputations, especially in trial law. An attorney’s legal education forms the foundation of their knowledge and understanding of the law and how it is practiced. In addition, each state’s laws may differ significantly, so an effective attorney will understand your specific state’s laws as well.
Your lawyer should hold certifications. For example, is your lawyer board certified by the National Board of Trial Advocacy? Certifications require specialized training and experience. They are also required to pass exams on specific legal processes and topics to receive these certifications.
Finally, your lawyer should be licensed in your state. Although lawyers can consult on cases out of their jurisdictions, they cannot actively practice law in states in which they are not licensed.
Experience may overcome some deficiencies in legal education. Therefore, find out how long your lawyer has been handling car accident cases. In addition, choose a lawyer who has extensive trial experience in civil court. Your insurance company may base their negotiations on your lawyer’s trial experience, so if your lawyer lacks this experience, your insurance company may significantly reduce their settlement amount. Hire a lawyer who is ready and willing to go to court.
You also want a strong negotiator with a proven track record of success. Therefore, find out what percentage of the lawyer’s cases were successes. Learn about the types of awards the lawyer was able to achieve and whether these damages were awarded through trials or negotiations.
Finally, find out what percentage of this lawyer’s cases involve car accidents. You want a lawyer who deals with these types of cases on a daily basis, not every so often, because these lawyers will be aware of any changes in the law.
Reviews and Referrals
Not only can you receive referrals from your family, peers and colleagues, but you can check online reviews, such as the Martindale-Hubbell Bar Registry, for information on local auto accident attorneys.
Learn about the attorney’s communication methods and consistency. You should also find out if the lawyer is transparent throughout the entire legal process, including during your consultation when you discuss fees. Your lawyer should make sure you understand the process, documents and any new developments in your case.
Learn if your prospective attorneys’ clients are satisfied overall with their case outcomes. Then, investigate whether the attorney responds to any negative or dissatisfied reviews and how these were resolved.
After you have completed your research and met with your prospective lawyers, choose a lawyer you trust to represent you in your auto injury case.