If you have been the victim in a California personal injury accident and have made the decision to hire a personal injury accident attorney – o are debating whether or not you need one – you should have a clear understanding of what a personal injury accident attorney actually does and what you can expect once you have hired one to represent you. While every attorney is unique and each case different, there are a few basic expectations that every client should have regarding her personal injury accident attorney.
The first thing you should expect from your California personal injury accident attorney is professionalism. Not only should your attorney treat you in a professional manner but his staff should also treat you this way. Remember – you are the client and your attorney works for YOU. His staff should be courteous, knowledgeable and helpful. While your attorney may be extremely busy, you should receive a response to telephone calls or e-mails within a reasonable amount of time. Your questions should be answered and the terms of your representation should be put in writing so that you are clear on what your attorney is charging you and for what you are being charged. In most personal injury accident cases the attorney receives a percentage of the final settlement or award. Your attorney should explain how this form of compensation works and how much he will receive upon the conclusion of your case.
You should also expect your attorney to be your voice throughout the legal process. From the moment you hire your personal injury accident lawyer he should take over for you. You should not have to speak to the defendant or the defendant’s insurance company from that point on as a rule. In fact, your attorney will probably tell you to refer any future calls or correspondence to his office.
A good personal injury accident attorney can also help you with your medical treatment if necessary. If you were not covered by medical insurance at the time of the accident then you may have problems finding a doctor to treat your injuries. In many cases, your attorney can help you find a doctor that will work with you and wait to receive payment until the lawsuit has been settled.
You can expect your personal injury accident attorney to thoroughly investigate your accident to determine who was at fault and what damages you suffered. In some cases, negligence is clear while in others your attorney will need to do a substantial amount of investigation (known as discovery in legal terms) before he can determine who the negligent party is in your case. He should also stay in close contact with your medical provides in order to assess the injuries you have suffered and document the bills you have accrued and are likely to accrue in the future.
Lastly, your California personal injury lawyer should be prepared to proceed to a jury trial if you and your attorney decide that is the best option. All the work your attorney does along the way should prepare him to actually file the lawsuit and proceed to trial if the defendant is not accepting negligence or the settlement offer is considerably lower than it you feel it should be.
If you have any additional questions, or would like a free and detailed evaluation of your California personal injury accident case, please contact the personal injury law firm of Ledger & Associates at 1-800-300-0001 or visit the firm’s website for more information at www.ledgerlaw.com.