There is too much at stake in your Personal Injury claim to hire an attorney based on his/her advertisement(s). Do your homework on a law firm before retaining them to represent you in your Personal Injury Case. Here are some simple steps to assist you in choosing the best advocate for YOUR case.
The Colorado Supreme Court explains that “[w]hen you hire a lawyer, you should take the same careful steps as when you choose a doctor, dentist, home contractor or other expert. If you do not know a lawyer, ask family, friends or neighbors for names. You also can ask others whose opinion you respect, such as a church leader, accountant, realtor or other professional. A suggestion from someone you know and trust based on that person’s own experience often is the best way to find a good lawyer.”
Advertisements & Directories
You already knew that attorneys pay for television and radio ads, but did you know that lawyers can also pay for premium listings in many directories? This can make it difficult to determine how much of an attorney’s listing on a legal directory is due to that lawyer’s acumen versus advertising dollars spent. While it is not a bad idea to utilize directories to help you find a list of potential candidates, your selection process should not end here.
Research Your Prospective Attorney
Is your attorney licensed to practice law in the state in which your injury took place? Does that attorney carry professional liability insurance?
What is the attorney’s disciplinary history?
Answers to all of these questions can be found using the “Attorney Search” function located at www.coloradosupremecourt.com
Utilize Free Consultations to Interview Attorneys
Many Personal Injury Attorneys will offer a complementary initial consultation. This is an opportunity for the attorney to learn about you and your case so that the attorney can determine whether s/he is willing to represent you. You can also use the initial consultation as an opportunity to learn about the law firm/lawyer. Come prepared with questions to ask the attorney, such as
- Where did you go to college and law school?
- How long have you been practicing law here in Colorado?
- How long have you practiced law?
- How many Personal Injury cases have you handled?
- What other experience do you have in this field?
- Who all will be working on my case?
- With whom will I speak when I call the firm about my case? Will it be the attorney or his/her assistant/paralegal? How soon are calls returned?
- Do you belong to any legal or civic groups?
- How many cases have you tried in the last year? In the last five years? What were the outcomes of those trials?
- Are you willing to try my case and do you have the resources necessary to do so?
- Have you received any special training in your field since law school?
- What is the turnover rate for attorneys at this law firm?
The initial consultation should not be a high-pressure sales pitch: do not let an attorney or law firm pressure you into signing up with them during the initial consultation if you are not ready to do so. You should be equally concerned if the attorney shows little or no interest in representing you or if s/he resists your attempts to learn more about his/her professional background. Some other considerations when choosing a law firm might include whether the attorney took the time to meet with you herself or whether she sent a non-attorney in her place. Recovering from an injury and pursuing a Personal Injury claim is a lengthy process. Doing your homework before retaining an attorney will ensure you’ve selected an experienced lawyer whom you can trust.
If you are looking for experienced lawyers whom you can trust to represent you for a Personal Injury matter, call 719.634.0102 today to schedule your free consultation with the Colorado Springs Injury Attorneys at Rosenbaum & Wootton, P.C.