Important Steps Before Hiring a Personal Injury Lawyer

Getting involved in an accident may make you feel disorientated and determining the best way to proceed might seem nearly impossible. You may want to receive compensation for the injuries you have sustained, but there is a lot that goes into retrieving these benefits. Of course, the obvious step is to seek legal advice from a legitimate personal injury attorney; however, you must first know the important steps to take beforehand. On that note, read on for a step-by-step guide on what you should do before hiring a personal injury attorney.

Seek Medical Attention

Almost immediately after getting involved in an accident, you must seek medical attention. This is imperative to determine the injuries you incurred and your medical report will play a vital role in your compensation claim. Without proof of medical attention, it will be hard to build a case against the liable entities. Getting properly checked by your doctor or physician will be able to put you on an appropriate treatment plan to help your recovery, which will aid your lawyer in getting you an adequate settlement from insurers and the at-fault party. You must also make sure your medical report is submitted to your health insurance.

Get a Copy of the Paperwork

Aside from your medical records, there is a lot of paperwork you’ll need to prepare before making an appointment with your lawyer. Your lawyer can help you with all the nitty-gritty details, but it doesn’t hurt to come prepared since time is of the essence. You must gather as much evidence as you can from the scene of the accident, including photographic evidence and a copy of the police report to document the details of the collision. You’ll also need the details regarding the incident, including the date, location, weather or road condition, etc. If your injuries were caused by a car accident, then you’ll want the car insurance policy information for yourself and the other party. Lastly, you’ll want a detailed breakdown of your lost income due to your inability to work with the injuries you incurred.

Be Wary of Time Limits

Note that there is a statute of limitations on compensation claims. If you wait too long to start the legal process, receiving compensation may not be possible. You’ll want to know the time limits in your state to get in touch with a lawyer as soon as possible. Most states typically have a two-year limit. However, South Carolina personal injury lawyers state that the statute of limitations for personal injury cases there is 3 years after the date of the injury. So, be sure to note the time limits in the state you live in.

Choose a Lawyer Who Specializes in Personal Injury

Understand which area of law you will need an expert in as there are different attorneys who all obtain different skill sets. You’ll also want to know the difference between personal injury and bodily injury cases. Bodily injury cases refer to physical injuries to the body such as disfigurement, cuts, burns, lacerations, bruises, and abrasions. Personal injury cases cover car and road accidents, slip and falls, wrongful death claims, and defective products. So, ensure that you engage with an attorney who specializes in the appropriate field.

Make Sure to Choose a Licensed Attorney

Searching for the right lawyer is vital for a satisfying outcome and your overall health. In order to gauge a lawyer’s credibility, consider their education and former clients’ experience. You should also check the attorney directories in your state to ensure the lawyer you choose has a license and is permitted to practice law in your country.

Ask the Right Questions Before Hiring

You need to know the questions to ask an attorney to gauge their expertise and feel at ease with your decision. Some of the questions you should ask an attorney before hiring one are as follows:

  • Where did you attend law school?
  • Where did you practice law?
  • How long have you handled personal injury cases?
  • Have you represented cases against insurance companies? 
  • How do you plan to proceed and win my case?

It’s best to interview several lawyers before hiring one to ensure you are comfortable with who you choose to handle your case. Personal injury cases are very serious and you may have sustained injuries that make it difficult for you to fight for your rights on your own. Therefore, you will need to have the utmost faith in your attorney that they can handle the situation on your behalf. So, before choosing a lawyer, refer to this guide to make sure you haven’t missed any vital steps that may compromise your case.