What Questions to Ask a Personal Injury Lawyer
What are the questions you should ask a personal injury lawyer? Sawan & Sawan is a family-owned, generational personal injury law firm and we put together the following answers to several frequently asked questions for personal injury victims. If you have any specific questions about your potential injury claim, call the personal injury attorneys at Sawan & Sawan today at 419-900-0955 to schedule a free consultation. If we don’t obtain you compensation for your injury, we charge nothing.
What Questions to Ask a Personal Injury Lawyer
Obtaining compensation after a personal injury can be very complicated, frustrating and difficult. To help make the process a bit easier, you may want to hire a personal injury lawyer to help represent your interests in settlement negotiations or court proceedings with the insurance company. We never advise prospective clients to file a lawsuit without the benefit of a skilled personal injury attorney, as the rules can be extremely technical and require a certain level of training and experience to succeed. However, before you hire a personal injury Attorney, we recommend asking some very important questions.
Remember that the personal injury lawyer you ultimately hire will work very closely with you, so before anything else, you should feel comfortable with the person that you will come to view as your trusted advisor. When you meet with or speak to a prospective personal injury lawyer, we recommend asking the following questions:
1. How Much Do You Charge?
Almost all personal injury lawyers will accept cases on a contingency fee. This means that if your lawyer is unsuccessful at wither settling or winning your case at trial, you pay nothing. As Sawan & Sawan, we offer a no-fee guarantee that promises exactly this – if you don’t obtain compensation for you, we don’t get paid.
With a contingency arrangement, most lawyers will take something between 30% and 40% of the gross settlement. Remember that, as with everything, you get what you pay for. You should be skeptical of any lawyer promising a particularly low contingency fee – as they may not be experienced enough to get you the compensation you deserve. Remember, you get one chance to recover financially after a personal injury, and an unqualified or inexperienced lawyer can cause lasting harm to your interested and personal injury case.
2. Who is Responsible for Costs If I Lose My Case?
Many personal injury lawyers will advance costs on a case, but nearly all personal injury lawyers will expect that to be paid back out of settlement. In a typical personal injury case, costs include things such as medical record fees, expert fees, mail costs and the like. It’s important to understand how these costs will be handled before choosing a personal injury lawyer. We recommend that you have a full conversation with a prospective personal injury lawyer about the expected cost before deciding to proceed with your case. Our team of personal injury lawyers are flexible with costs and open to candid discussion about cost estimates.
3. Have you Tried Cases Before?
You should never assume that just because a lawyer claims to be a “personal injury lawyer” – that they have the same court room experience as other lawyers. You should ask your prospective personal injury lawyer about experience and results. For example, if you were injured in a dog bite or slip and fall case, you may not want to hire a lawyer that has only ever handled car accident cases. At Sawan & Sawan, we have a combined 35+ years of legal experience and have successfully argued many cases in Courtrooms – including several successful jury trials and a unanimous victory in the Ohio Supreme Court. When it comes time to get the job done, we have an in court track record that we are extremely proud of.
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4. How Much Time Can You Give to My Case?
A personal injury firm is only as good as it’s time management. Many lawyers take on too many cases at once – leading to limited communication and poor attention to detail. It’s important that you stress how vital this case is to you and to get an understanding about the lawyer or firms current case load. It’s also important to look into past client reviews of a firm or lawyer online. At Sawan & Sawan, we have over 100 5-star reviews from happy clients.
5. How Long Does it Take to Resolve a Personal Injury Case?
While all personal injury cases are quite different, there are some general timelines that apply to all personal injury cases. You should speak to a prospective personal injury lawyer about what to expect in terms of timeline. While it’s unlikely you will get a complete answer to this, you should be able to get a rough estimate about the time it will take.
6. Will My Case Go To Trial?
This is another difficult question to answer at the early stages of a personal injury case, but an experienced personal injury lawyer should be able to add some thoughtful insight into the likelihood of settlement or trial. With enough experience, a personal injury lawyer should be able to liken your facts to other cases they have handled, as well as research similar cases to understand the potential arguments that might lead to a trial. It’s important to share a full and complete recitation of the facts of your personal injury case to ensure your lawyer can consider all factors at issue.
7. What is My Case Worth?
We get this question all the time, and the fact is, there is no one-size fits all answer to this question. However, a skilled personal injury lawyer should have some sense of the value of the case from the outset. The more information the personal injury gathers – such as medical bills, records and future medical treatment – the better that lawyer will be able to approximate the value. It’s also important to consider pre-existing conditions, past accidents and liability issues when determining the value of a case. While much of this is unknown at the early stages of hiring a personal injury lawyer, it is good to begin that conversation as early as possible.
8. Who Will Handle My Case?
Especially when considering hiring a personal injury law firm, you should always ask what lawyer will handle the various aspects of your case. Some personal injury law firms like to parade senior partners in front of prospective clients, only to hand the case to a new associate once the contract is signed. You should always ask who will handle your case and who your main point of contact. At Sawan & Sawan, we are a family owned personal injury firm – and we pride ourselves on easy and readily available partner access to all of our clients.
9. What Is My Role in the Personal Injury Case?
Before you hire a personal injury lawyer, you should have a good understanding of your role in the process and what is going to be expected of you. Some people naturally want to be intimately involved in their personal injury case. If you would like to be this involved, you need to speak with your prospective personal injury lawyer in the first meeting about your expectations and preferences. As with many of these points, you want to ensure you are on the same page as the personal injury lawyer that you hire in this respect.
10. Can I Speak to Past Clients?
As with many other businesses, references can be extremely useful. While sometimes former clients will not be available to directly talk to new prospective clients – you should always looks for reviews on the internet. We are proud to have over 100 5-star reviews from former clients, and we recommend that any prospective client review all of these to better understand the quality of legal work they can expect from Sawan & Sawan.
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Dennis P. Sawan
Licensed in Ohio and Georgia
Christopher A. Sawan
Licensed in Ohio and Michigan
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