Most personal injury attorneys will offer a free consultation as the initial step in pursuing a personal injury case. But no matter how much in need of legal representation you are following an injury, we know that many people can feel intimidated by attorneys and confused by the process, even in dealing with an attorney who might be working for them. But a free consultation with a personal injury attorney should not be an intimidating process, and instead be a way for you and the attorney to both understand your case and your options.
Not all personal injury attorneys conduct themselves in the same way, but here are a few basics that you can expect in a free consultation with a personal injury attorney.
The Attorney Will Try to Determine Whether You Have a Case
No matter how real and devastating your injuries after an accident or violent event, one necessary aspect of being able to recover in a settlement or verdict is showing that the defendant (or defendants) was legally at fault in causing your injuries.
Whether someone is legally at fault for you injuries will depend in part upon your specific state laws, but generally it will have to be shown that the defendant: 1) acted carelessly, recklessly, or intentionally; and 2) you were injured as a foreseeable result of the defendant’s actions.
The attorney will ask about the events that occurred to determine whether it will be possible to show legal fault, and will also likely ask about multiple defendants (including the employer of the party who caused the accident) to determine who might be liable.
The Attorney Will Ask About Your Damages
The attorney will also likely ask you questions about the damages that you have suffered and will suffer. Damages refer to the type of losses a plaintiff suffers due to a defendant’s actions, and can include medical bills (both past and future), in-home care, lost income, lost earning potential, and pain and suffering.
These damages are ultimately what the attorney will be fighting for on your behalf, and thus the attorney will want to have a good sense of what they are before deciding whether to go forward with your case.
The Terms of the Attorney’s Representation Will Be Explained to You
If the attorney thinks he or she is in a position to represent you in your personal injury lawsuit, then the terms of that representation should be explained to you. Most personal injury attorneys represent victims on a contingency basis, meaning they will not ask for any legal fee upfront and will only collect a legal fee as a portion of your recovery if and when the attorney is able to recover in a settlement or verdict.
You Will Get to Assess Whether You Think the Attorney is Worthy to Represent You
While a free consultation is partially about the attorney’s evaluation of your potential case, it is also about your evaluation of that attorney and his or her ability to obtain the maximum recovery that you are owed for your injuries.
Ultimately, no attorney can represent you unless you give the go-ahead to do so, so you can and should take the time to evaluate whether you think the attorney has what it takes. Does the attorney instill confidence in you? Are they attentive to your needs? Do they take the time to explain what they will do on your behalf in a way that makes sense? Perhaps most importantly, do they have the experience and proven track record of winning in other cases that suggests they can do the same for you?
Use your free consultation to get your questions out there so you can make a wise decision about whom you entrust to pursue your personal injury matter.
Call a New Jersey / New York Personal Injury Attorney Today
The experienced personal injury attorneys at Judd Shaw Injury Law have won over $90 million in compensation for our clients, and we are here to stand by your side as your allies and champions in winning the recovery you deserve from all potential defendants. Contact us today to speak to a personal injury attorney about your personal injury and what our team can do to fight for maximum recovery on your behalf.