How To Choose An Injury Lawyer
- Personal Injury
Choosing a Colorado Injury Lawyer
You certainly have options when you choose an injury lawyer. There are a number of us in Colorado and most of us can take more cases, including yours. But if you are reading this that is probably not good enough for you. Given that you are searching and actually reading something about/by your potential lawyer, you don’t seem like a person who chooses an attorney based on the first commercial you see on the television in the hospital.
Carefully choosing an injury lawyer to represent you can make all the difference for you and the outcome of your case. In my experience as a trial lawyer, I have had quite a few clients come to me after an unhappy experience with another attorney. I have also had very positive feedback from many who went on to work with me. Here are some of the most important factors I have learned from them:
“I Had No Idea What Was Going On”
I cannot emphasize enough how central communication is to the attorney-client relationship. The fact is it makes all the difference, and that is why I list it first. Most people who have come to me after firing another attorney have complained that the previous attorney failed to communicate with them. They didn’t know what was going on with their case, or why. Sometimes there are legitimate reasons for periods of reduced activity in a case. A common example is if your treatment and recovery are simply taking longer than expected. It is always easier to get through those periods if you understand what is going on with your case and why.
Good communication is also a sign that your lawyer actually cares about you and your case. If you’re essentially a case number and a file, you’ll know it. Communication will suffer and if communication isn’t good, how will your lawyer be able to come to understand your injuries on a personal level? Without that, how can the lawyer describe the real impacts of your injuries to a claims adjuster? How can they negotiate for you if they don’t really know you?
Good communication and a good attorney-client relationship not only make the representation more effective, they actually help you feel better about the entire process.
Know When to Hold ‘Em
There are plenty of lawyers who brag about going to trial all the time. There are plenty of lawyers who brag about all the cases they have settled out of court. I believe a good lawyer will fearlessly do what is best for you and your case. Some cases need to go to trial. I personally enjoy those cases because I enjoy the process of filing and winning a lawsuit. I enjoy speaking to juries and holding insurance companies accountable. I have been consistently praised for trial skills and I hope to continue taking cases to trial and learning about success at trial for the rest of my career. I can talk for hours about trial practice and never get bored.
However, it is important that an injury lawyer be willing to settle a case where that is your best outcome. Sometimes a client does not want to go through the emotional turmoil, uncertainty, and delay that come with taking a case to trial. Those are valid reasons to push toward the best possible settlement for that client. A good lawyer must be able to identify what is best for you and your case, and then do the right thing for that case. A policy of always going to trial or always settling a case (some lawyers just never go to trial) is a policy that serves the lawyer’s preference rather than putting the client first. Choose a lawyer who can and will do the right thing for your case.
Bait & Switch
Working with a small firm has a variety of advantages. One of those is knowing who you will be working with. Many larger firms have so many clients that cases get passed around and reassigned while the case is still pending. Some even have designated intake lawyers who meet with clients during an intake meeting, then hand the case off to another lawyer on the staff.
I have had clients come to me after receiving that kind of treatment, or after another firm let their case sit for too long, or because status updates were hard to obtain when even the paralegals assigned to the case left or were reassigned multiple times.
My clients choose to work with me, and I work their cases from start to finish. When my clients have questions, the answers come from me, and cases are not passed around month to month as staffing changes. Choose a lawyer who will personally work your case and avoid the hand-off and case reassignment hassle common to larger firms. Should you meet with a larger firm, ask to meet the lawyer who will actually be assigned to your case and request a guarantee that your case will not be passed around as office assignments change.
The points I have made above cover just a few of the many factors that rightfully go into carefully choosing an attorney to work with. However, making a careful choice is worth the effort. Getting to know the attorney you will be working with, choosing an attorney who cares about helping you, feeling good about your communication with that attorney, and confidence that the attorney you select will help you get your best possible outcome, are all huge steps toward making a smart choice.
If you are in the process of trying to select a Colorado injury lawyer to work with, consider hiring an attorney who offers representation that is both personalized and effective at getting your best outcome. Call 303-993-5512 to schedule a free consultation with personal injury attorney Vernon Ready.