Personal Injury Lawyer Red Flags
If your injuries resulting from a car accident have left you with medical bills that exceed your insurance policy limit, filing a personal injury lawsuit is an option. Given the statute of limitations, you should begin contacting personal injury lawyers promptly, but you should not make a hasty decision about which lawyer to hire. Most law firms offer a free initial consultation where you and the lawyer can ask each other questions to determine whether you are a good fit for each other. Even a lawyer who has a great reputation or one whom a friend personally recommended might not be the best choice for your case, and the best lawyers will be honest with you from the beginning about the ways in which they can and cannot help you. If the medical bills from your car accident are starting to add up, the time is now to contact a Columbia car accident lawyer.
Beware of Door Lawyers
Some lawyers practice “door law,” where they agree to represent every client who walks through the door. This makes sense for some law firms in small towns, where people mostly hire lawyers for routine matters such as buying and selling businesses, drafting wills, modifying child support orders, or minor criminal offenses like DUI. If you have a choice, though, choose a law firm where your lawyer has represented many clients with cases similar to yours. If you wouldn’t go to a podiatrist about a stomachache, then don’t go to a lawyer who mostly deals with trademark infringement disputes about your personal injury case.
Lack of Transparency About Payment
If law firms only accepted clients who could afford to pay by the hour as they go, then most law firms would go out of business quickly. Many personal injury law firms accept payment on a contingency basis, which is where you pay the lawyer part of your settlement or judgment after you receive it. You agree upon hiring the lawyer, what percentage of your settlement you will eventually pay. Some personal injury lawyers work on a modified contingency basis, where in addition to paying a percentage of your settlement (a lower percentage than you would pay in a pure contingency arrangement), you also pay a flat fee upfront or a relatively low hourly rate.
A law firm’s payment policies are only one of many factors that influence your choice of lawyer. If the lawyer will not tell you how much you will have to pay until after you agree to hire them, however, this is a red flag.
It is fine for lawyers to give you illustrative examples of previous cases they have represented, as long as they do not give identifying details about the clients. If a lawyer badmouths other lawyers, though, then remember that, whether or not gossip is true, it reflects badly on the person doing the gossiping.
Let Us Help You Today
The car accident lawyers at the Stanley Law Group are here to answer your questions about payment, the specifics of personal injury law, and other matters. Contact The Stanley Law Group in Columbia, South Carolina or call (803)799-4700 for a free initial consultation.