Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Bicycle Accident Attorney
Not every lawyer is the same. Different lawyers have different areas of practice, and different lawyers have different levels of skill, education, and experience. Before you retain an attorney to help you with your bike accident injury claim, make sure that you’ve picked the right lawyer or law firm for the job. Below, we offer a few important questions you should ask either in your initial consultation with your potential bike injury lawyer or while doing your research in advance of taking the meeting. If you’ve been injured in a bike accident in Southern California, make sure you call the right Calabasas bike accident injury attorney to handle your case.
What is Your Area of Specialization?
Not every lawyer practices every area of law. Lawyers are like doctors: You wouldn’t go to an orthodontist to handle your spinal cord surgery, and you shouldn’t go to a tax lawyer to handle your bike accident case. In your initial consultation, find out what areas of practice the lawyer specializes in. Do they handle personal injury exclusively, or are they a “jack of all trades” (and likely a master of none)? Do they have experience with bike accidents in particular? Are there any standout factors to your bike accident case that may require special knowledge, such as an out-of-state defendant, a government defendant (e.g., if you were hit by an ambulance), or other complicating issues? Make sure you hire a lawyer who has experience in the specific area you need.
How Long Have You Been Practicing Bicycle Injury Law?
Even if the attorney practices exclusively in personal injury and bicycle accident matters, you should ask about their level of experience. Are they fresh out of law school and looking to cut their teeth on your matter, or do they have years of experience? A brand-new attorney may be cheaper, but they may not know how to fully handle your case or maximize your compensation. You want a lawyer who has the notches on their belt sufficient to demonstrate that they can handle any aspect of your case that may arise.
What is Your Trial Experience?
Most personal injury cases settle long before trial. Typically, the plaintiff and the defendant’s insurance provider can reach a settlement that adequately compensates the injured accident victim. However, not every case reaches settlement. The defendant might refuse to admit fault, or their insurance provider might try to downplay the severity of the plaintiff’s injuries or the amount to which they should be entitled. If that happens, your personal injury attorney will need to be ready to take your case all the way to trial. Before you hire your bike injury lawyer, make sure that they are prepared to go the distance with your case. Have they or their associates been to trial? Have they succeeded? Do they have the resources and the time available to take your case to trial, if necessary?
How Much Do You Charge?
Lawyer fee structures can be difficult to grasp at first, but it’s important for you to understand just how much you’ll be paying for their services. Lawyers are required to disclose their fee structure to you in advance of taking on your matter.
Personal injury lawyers typically work on contingency, which means they’ll be paid a percentage of your eventual settlement or jury award. The percentages vary by law firm, however, as does the treatment of things like court fees and other litigation costs. Make sure you understand how much you’ll be paying before you hire your bike injury lawyer. You may want to consult with multiple attorneys before choosing the right lawyer with an appropriate fee.
What is Your Record of Success?
At the end of the day, what you should care most about is results. Has the lawyer obtained substantial settlements or jury verdicts for past clients? Do they have success in the area of bicycle accidents? While past success does not always mean future success, it’s a good indicator as to whether your attorney has the experience and the skill necessary to get you the compensation you are owed.
Call Today for Experienced, Qualified Representation from an Accomplished Southern California Bike Injury Lawyer
If you or someone you care about has been injured in a bicycle accident in Southern California, the successful personal injury legal team at the Halpern Law Firm is here to help. We fight to get you the compensation you and your family deserve. Call us at 818-785-5999 today for a Free No-Risk Confidential Consultation. These cases are handled on a contingency basis, meaning you won’t be charged any attorney’s fees unless we win.