7 Questions to Ask Before Hiring an Auto Accident Attorney

7 Questions to Ask Before Hiring an Auto Accident Attorney

Even if you consider yourself the safest driver on the road, you can’t always avoid other people’s negligence. This can cause you to be the victim of a car accident. Suppose you’ve been involved in some kind of auto accident and are recovering. In that case, you don’t want to deal with any pushback from the insurance companies and the party responsible for the accident. To avoid this, you may want to get the proper legal help and advice.

When you work with an auto accident lawyer, you’ll be able to get the help you need when it comes to navigating through the claims process. However, it’s crucial to find a lawyer that is the most suitable fit for you and your case.

Before you pick a lawyer or law firm to represent you in your case, you need to ask the right questions. Here are 7 of the most common questions you should ask:


1. Have you handled cases similar to mine in a successful manner?

When you hire a lawyer, you’re going to want to make sure that they have experience handling matters similar to yours, and you also want to be sure that they’ve done so successfully. The chances are that you’ll want to explore attorneys and agencies that specialize in auto accidents so that they have some experience and success with similar cases.


2. Do you offer contingency fees?

When you seek legal help, the services aren’t free. However, you might be able to find an auto accident lawyer that will work with you on contingency. This arrangement has the firm wave its fees until damages are collected.


3. What kind of auto accidents have you worked with in the past?

Even if you hire an attorney who has worked on auto accident cases, you need to be sure of the specifics. Ask what kind of accidents they’ve worked on and pay attention to the details. It’s important to have someone on your side with a reasonable understanding of how the court will react. It’s also crucial for your lawyer to be able to anticipate potential moves like loopholes and exploitations and know how to handle them in your favor.


4. How long do you expect it will take to resolve my case?

Even though the attorney might not provide you with a straightforward answer to this question, it’s an important one as it can determine whether or not your lawyer is ready to take on the long haul for you. Most people and companies decide to settle after car accidents as the deals can be tempting, but it’s also the easy way out. Some cases will require more time, effort, and planning.


5. What do I need to do on my end?

First things first, bring as much evidence and information as you can. Provide them with medical records, documents related to the auto accident, wage loss notifications, auto repair bills, and more. You’ll want to have effective communication with your lawyer so that you’re informed about the progress of your case.


6. Who will take the lead in my case?

This question can depend on whether you ask a single attorney for legal advice or an agency. You’ll want to know who will be dedicating their time to your case and take on the responsibilities so that you can be sure you’re in good hands.


7. How much is my case worth?

This can help you determine whether or not you even have a case. Some auto accidents aren’t worth the time and effort, while others can be extremely rewarding if you move forward in the legal process.

Asking your potential auto accident attorney these seven questions should help you better understand if they are a good fit for your case and whether or not you are comfortable moving forward with their services.

If you have been injured in a work-related accident, please see 7 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Workers Compensation Attorney.

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Auto Accident FAQ

Your first and foremost action following an accident is to stay calm, check if you or anyone else involved has been injured, and call the police. Get the name and contact information of all parties involved in the accident as well as any witnesses of the event. To document the damage, take pictures of the accident scene, the vehicles, and your injuries. It’s important not to admit liability until you hire an attorney because they will conduct a thorough investigation to establish the driver at fault.
Right after a car accident, you may feel fine, but injuries can surface days, weeks, and even months later. That’s why it’s good to see a doctor even if you don’t believe you were injured in the accident. Your doctor can recognize issues or injuries that won’t immediately become apparent to you and alert you to warning signs of injuries that may arise due to the accident. If you fail to treat your injuries within a certain period of time, you may forfeit your right to get reimbursement for future medical costs. The general rule is not to settle auto accident claims without having been examined by a medical professional.
In most cases, you won’t have to go to court. The majority of auto accident claims are resolved outside of court after negotiating the terms with the insurer. Most insurance companies generally try to settle claims as quickly as possible and for as little money as possible, so it’s wise to have an attorney negotiate on your behalf.
In addition to taking pictures of the accident scene and taking the contact information of the involved parties and witnesses, your detailed explanation of how the accident happened is also necessary to file a claim. Law enforcement reports of the accident will also serve as crucial evidence in your claim.
Many factors determine the driver at fault in an auto accident case. Do not accept any part of the blame until the investigation has concluded. Even if the investigation finds that you are partially at fault, you may still be entitled to receive compensation. There are cases when the victim also shares part of the blame for an accident. If, for example, you were driving five to ten mph over the speed limit when the accident happened, this would have limited your reaction time, and you could likely be considered a negligent driver even if you weren’t the one to cause the crash. Different states have different ways of settling auto accident claims where more than one driver is at fault. So it’s best to check the specific laws in your state (or the state where the accident took place) or discuss the matter with your auto accident injury lawyer.
It happens surprisingly often that people get into an auto accident where the driver at fault doesn’t have insurance. In these situations, it’s wise to have an auto insurance policy that comes with Uninsured Motorist (UM) coverage. That way, if you get into an accident and the at-fault driver doesn’t have insurance, you will still be able to file your claim under the UM coverage you have with your own insurance company. Your insurer will then process the claim following the same process as it would for an opposing insurer. The only difference is that the claim will be against your UM coverage and not against another driver. Likewise, if you were involved in a hit-and-run accident where the responsible driver fled the scene before you could take their information, you can again seek compensation from your UM coverage.
Suppose you suffered injuries after an auto accident that was caused by another driver’s negligence. In that case, there are two main types of damages that you may seek compensation for: compensatory (a.k.a. monetary) and punitive damages. Compensatory damages are the most common type of damages in a personal injury claim, and they often include: ● Current and future medical bills ● Property damage ● Emotional duress ● Lost wages ● Loss of enjoyment of life ● Loss of future earnings potential On the other hand, punitive damages are much rarer, but they can occur in situations where the vehicle manufacturer is to blame.