Questions to Ask A Personal Injury Lawyer

Questions to Ask A Personal Injury Lawyer, man frustrated with personal injury claim

After you’ve been injured in an accident, you’re likely facing mounting medical bills, missing out on work, and unsure of your future. A knowledgeable Louisiana personal injury lawyer can help you recover the compensation you need to heal from the people responsible for your accident. However, you need to ensure that the lawyer you hire is competent and experienced in your specific type of injury since every personal injury case is different.

As you’re looking for an injury lawyer to represent you in your Louisiana personal injury claim, consider asking the following questions to ask a personal injury lawyer in the initial consultation. The way the lawyer answers them can help guide you in choosing an attorney who will help you maximize your compensation.

The Following are Common Personal Injury Lawyer Questions

What should I do after my accident?

You should always seek medical attention within 72 hours of an injury, especially if someone else was at fault. Your primary care physician may be unwilling to examine you, however, but an experienced personal injury attorney will be able to advise you on a doctor who will diagnose your injuries and start you on a treatment plan.

You’ll also be advised to attend all follow-up visits and physical therapy appointments and to take all prescribed medications. Failing to do so can be used as evidence that your injuries aren’t as bad as you claim in order to deny your coverage.

What deadlines do I need to meet?

Questions to Ask A Personal Injury Lawyer, woman thinking about questions

Your personal injury lawyer will take care of most of the deadlines in your claim, but there’s one that you cannot miss: the filing of your claim must be within Louisiana’s statute of limitations.

In Louisiana, the deadline to file suit for a personal injury is one year past the date of the injury. This period is one of the shortest in the country, and it doesn’t give victims much time to seek justice. Your lawyer should be aware of this and have everything ready to make filing your claim as easy and stress-free as possible.

Remember, your lawyer should take care of the legal aspects of your case so you can focus on healing. Make sure they know when vital deadlines are and that they have a plan to meet them before you sign a contract.

What can you do for my personal injury case?

Because this is, ultimately, your case, your injury, and your life, it’s perfectly acceptable to ask your prospective lawyer, “How do you plan to represent me in my case? How will you help me maximize my compensation?”

Think of your initial consultation as your lawyer’s job interview. You’re deciding whether you want to hire them to represent your case, as opposed to another personal injury attorney. The attorney should have a step-by-step plan for how to proceed, as well as a basic idea of how your claim will go based on the information you’ve given them. Of course, new evidence can change things, but an experienced lawyer should be prepared for that as well.

How long will my case take?

It’s important to remember that every personal injury case is different. If you’ve suffered catastrophic injuries or if you were injured in a complicated accident, it could take longer to resolve your claim.

Whatever happened, your lawyer should have an idea of how long claims like yours usually take. Ask your lawyer how long they think it’ll take to fully resolve your case, especially if you need a settlement soon in order to pay for your medical bills, property damage costs, and other damages.

How will you communicate with me about my case?

This is one of the most important questions to ask a personal injury lawyer, and we think it’s asked far too little. You’re probably not familiar with how personal injury firms treat their clients unless you’ve hired one before—which is generally not the case. It’s essential to ask the following personal injury lawyer questions:

  • How often will you check in with me about my case?
  • How will you perform these check-ins? Phone calls, emails, and in-person meetings are all common ways that lawyers update their clients.
  • Will an attorney provide me with information, or will I mostly interact with a paralegal?

Think about how you’d like to communicate with your lawyer and ask if they can accommodate you. Finding a lawyer that provides you with the updates you need when you need them will go a long way to establishing your peace of mind.

Questions to Ask A Personal Injury Lawyer, Confused Man

Just because a lawyer is bar-certified in Louisiana doesn’t mean they’ll necessarily be a good advocate for your rights. Law is a vast subject, and lawyers specialize in different fields. Find a lawyer that specializes in the area of law particular to your specific injury—and don’t be afraid to ask them how many clients they’ve had with your injury as well.

Will my injury case go to trial?

The fact is that the vast majority of personal injury cases don’t go to trial. More likely than not, your claim will settle out of court after your lawyer and insurance negotiate a fair settlement.

However, there are times when negotiations break down or the other party refuses to admit fault. In these cases, your lawyer should be prepared to bring your suit to court, and they should be confident of their abilities should this possibility come to pass.

Ask how willing your lawyer is to negotiate a fair settlement with insurance, but also ask how willing they are to take your case to court. Their answers can be illuminating.

What damages can I recover in my personal injury case?

Damages recovered in personal injury lawsuits generally fall into one of two categories:

  • Economic damages, or those which can be accounted for easily, include hospital bills, costs of repairing or replacing your property, costs of ongoing medical care, lost wages, lost future earning capacity, and the like
  • Non-economic damages, those which don’t have a set economic value, include pain and suffering, loss of consortium, and loss of enjoyment of life

Based on your case, your lawyer should have some idea of what damages you can recover. We’ll work hard to make sure you are awarded the maximum damages possible, given your situation.

When can you get started on my case?

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Some firms may spread themselves thin, or only focus on their big “money-maker” cases—leaving their smaller clients to fend for themselves. At Gordon McKernan Injury Attorneys, that’s simply not true. When you hire us, we’ll treat you with the care and compassion we’d give our own family members and provide you with a dedicated, compassionate legal advocate throughout the course of your claim.

We hope you’ve found our blog about what questions to ask a personal injury lawyer helpful. If you need further guidance, give us a call today for a free legal consultation. We promise we’ll do everything we can to get you the compensation you deserve—if we don’t win your case, you won’t owe us a dime.