There are several questions you should ask your prospective personal injury attorney when you are selecting one to represent you.
Are you a member of the American Association for Justice (AAJ)?
Formerly known as the Association of Trial Lawyers of America or ATLA, this organization is the largest organization for personal injury attorneys in the U.S. and holds seminars and conferences about the latest trends in the law. This question is important to ask because attorneys who attend seminars and share information with their peers are often more up to date on the latest trends and how they affect their clients.
What type of credentials do you have?
You want to know about the attorney’s background and education. These are important, but often underexamined, items of information about a prospective attorney.
What type of experience do you have in handling particular cases?
When selecting a personal injury attorney, experience working on cases similar to yours is an extremely important factor. You want to make sure that the attorney you hire has represented clients with injuries similar to yours as well as similar types of cases. If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident, you don’t want to hire a lawyer who has never handled one before. Attorneys with expertise in the type of case you have will be better able to give you the qualified representation you deserve.
Have you handled personal injury court cases in the Florida area where my accident occurred?
You need an attorney who is familiar with the laws of the jurisdiction in which your personal injury accident occurred, since laws vary from state to state. Merely having an attorney who is licensed to practice in Florida is not enough; attorneys who know and understand the Florida personal injury laws will be better able to represent you in a competent manner.
Do you and your firm have the resources to handle my case?
Sometimes personal injury cases are extremely complicated, so you need to select an attorney whose firm has the resources to help them prepare and build your case. This means that they need to have things like:
- Investigators with the necessary and relevant experience
- Multiple attorneys with experience handling complex lawsuits
- Extensive network of experts in the fields related to your case