When it comes to finding a personal injury lawyer, there are many things you need to take into account. Your case verdict and the compensation you may receive are dependent on how good a job your lawyer can present your case. There are many personal injury lawyers to choose from in the Cleveland, Ohio area so finding the best one may seem daunting.
Use our list of what we at the Cochran Firm would consider when evaluating a personal injury lawyer's competency.
Tips On Picking the Best Personal Injury Lawyer in Cleveland
First and foremost, it is important to find someone who has experience in this area of law. Personal injury cases can be complex, and it is important to have a lawyer who understands the ins and outs of the legal system. Furthermore, an experienced lawyer will likely have a network of medical professionals and other experts who can be called upon to testify on your behalf.
- Do some online research and Googling on your lawyer
- Check legal sites like Avvo, Nolo, and peer review databases like martindale.com
- Even check Google Reviews to see what others are saying
- Ask other lawyers' opinions
- Get referrals from people you trust
It is also important to find a personal injury lawyer who offers consultations before you agree to have them represent your case. This will allow you to get to know the lawyer and his or her staff, and it will give you an opportunity to ask any questions.
2. Communication Skills
Your personal injury lawyer should be someone with whom you feel comfortable communicating. This is important because you will need to share sensitive information about your accident in order for them to build a strong case on your behalf. The lawyer should be able to explain complex legal terms in a way that you can understand, and they should also be responsive to your inquiries.
Ask for face-to-face meetings if this is what you need to feel comfortable. Your lawyer should be willing to meet with you over the phone and in person to make sure you are informed. You may be anxious about your case and having a lawyer that won't keep you in the dark about the details of your case can make a huge difference in easing your fears.
Your personal injury lawyer should also be available when you need them. If you have any questions or concerns, you should be able to get in touch with them without any problems. Furthermore, they should be able to keep you updated on the progress of your case.
Ask how often they will update you and whether or not they will be available 24/7 in case of an emergency. Set your expectations with your lawyer:
- Ask what the best way to get in contact (Phone, text, email)
- Ask how often your lawyer will give you case updates
- Ask when the best times are for you to reach out when needed
It is important to consider the reputation of your potential personal injury lawyer. You can learn a lot about someone's character by talking to people who have worked with them in the past. If you don't see eye to eye with your lawyer's views, they may not be the best fit for you. Ask around and see what others have to say about their experience.
You can also check out online reviews to get an idea of what past clients have thought about the lawyer's services. Make sure to read multiple reviews from different sources before making a decision.
Find out the types of cases your lawyer has represented and the results. If they are known for fighting and winning cases like yours, you can assume your case will have higher chances of a win as well.
You can check online reviews and ratings to get an idea of what others have thought about their experience.
- Look for testimonials on a lawyer's website
- Check Google Reviews
- Read other online reviews from third-party sites
You want to find someone who is sympathetic to your case and will fight hard to get you the compensation you deserve. There are a lot of personal injury lawyers out there, but not all of them will have your best interests at heart. Make sure you take the time to find someone who you can trust and who will fight for you.
Some legal professionals choose their cases based on personal beliefs and wanting to truly make a difference by providing justice to their clients. A lawyer like this will be more personally invested in your case and this is a great perk.
6. Legal Fees
Personal injury lawyers often work on a contingency basis, which means they do not get paid unless they win your case. This is beneficial for you because it means you don't have to pay anything upfront. In the case that they don't, your lawyer should provide a minimum and maximum fee estimate. It can be hard to accurately price out a case right from the start. With a cost estimate and a list of what tasks your lawyer believes will be involved, you can get a good idea of what you may need to pay.
You should always ask about legal fees and get an estimate of how much the lawyer expects to charge. Make sure you are clear about the terms of payment and what will happen if you lose your case. If you win, you will receive the amount recovered for your compensation and all expenses will be covered.
Your lawyer should be able to give you a breakdown of the legal fees, including how much they expect to charge for their services. A written agreement is recommended to avoid any future problems that could arise with a misunderstanding.
What To Do If You Aren't Happy With Your Lawyer
If you feel like you're not getting the best possible representation from your personal injury lawyer, it may be time to seek new counsel. Here are a few signs that it's time to find a new advocate to help with your case:
- Your lawyer isn't returning your calls.
- You have been waiting for months without any updates on your case.
- You feel like your lawyer is more interested in settling quickly than getting you the best possible outcome.
- Your lawyer seems to be unfamiliar with the details of your case.
- You've been advised to take a low settlement offer.
- You feel your lawyer has not acted ethically or properly.
- You feel you have been billed incorrectly.
If any of these issues resonate with you, it's time to start shopping around for a new lawyer. Personal injury cases can be complex, so it's important to find an advocate who will fight for your best interests. Don't hesitate to ask friends and family for referrals, or do some online research to find a lawyer who is the right fit for you.
Dismissing Your Lawyer
If you are not happy with your lawyer, you may be able to dismiss them. You will likely need to sign a new representation agreement with another lawyer. This is a big step not to be taken lightly. You will most likely be on the hook for fees for your previous lawyer and the new one. Read over your contract so you are aware of the financial responsibilities you may owe your lawyer.
If your case has progressed to the point of the attorney appearing in front of the judge in regards to your case, the judge will usually need to approve removing an attorney from a case.
You have the right to file a complaint to The Ohio Bar against your attorney for multiple reasons.
- You have tried to work through a communications issue with your attorney with no resolution.
- Your attorney has acted unethically in some way.
- You feel that your attorney has billed you incorrectly and will not issue a refund or return funds paid in advance.
Hire a Cleveland Personal Injury Lawyer You Can Trust
Personal injury cases require the expertise of a lawyer who knows the ins and outs of the legal system. The Cochran Firm in Cleveland has years of experience fighting for the rights of personal injury victims. We will thoroughly investigate your case to build a strong argument on your behalf. Our goal is to get you the maximum compensation possible so that you can move on with your life.
Don’t go through this process alone – we can help. Contact us today for a free consultation from our expert personal injury legal team. Call 1-800-THE-FIRM any time, any day.