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Posted in Personal Injury on September 21, 2023
If you are injured in a car accident, construction accident, slip and fall, or other incident, you might want to consult a New York City personal injury lawyer. An attorney can advise you of your rights and legal options for seeking compensation for your injuries, economic damages, and non-economic damages. However, how do you find the best personal injury lawyer for your case?
Choosing the best personal injury attorney in New York is not complicated when you follow a few basic steps. When searching for a lawyer, keep the following in mind:
This step and the next step help you narrow your list of potential lawyers to handle your injury case. Researching each attorney on your list is crucial.
You need to ensure they are in good standing with the state and can practice law in New York. You can take care of this step by searching their name through the Attorney Search of the New York State Unified Court System. The system tells you if the attorney is currently registered with the state, the date they were admitted to the New York Bar, and if there is a disciplinary history.
You want to choose an attorney who has experience handling cases similar to yours. Therefore, if your case involves a wrongful death, choose New York City wrongful death lawyers. However, if you were injured by a defective product, choose New York City product liability lawyers.
The best personal injury lawyer in New York will have specific qualities.
Things you want to look for in an attorney include:
You can learn a lot of information by reading an attorney’s website. Most attorneys include “About” pages for themselves and their law firm. You can also find information by searching the lawyer and the law firm on Google.
The only testimonials you will find on a law firm’s website are positive. Instead, search the internet for client reviews. Check out Yelp, Google, Avvo, and Justia. You can read peer reviews on Martindale-Hubbell.
Read both negative and positive reviews. Reviews that include specific details are usually the most trustworthy compared to reviews with one or two words (i.e., “best lawyer” and “bad lawyer”).
Once you have a short list, schedule consultations with each attorney. Most New York personal injury lawyers offer a free case evaluation. During your consultation, ask the attorney questions to help you determine whether they are the best person to handle your case.
Questions to ask a personal injury lawyer include:
You need to feel comfortable talking with an attorney. The best personal injury lawyers listen to your questions and respond accordingly. They do not talk over you or minimize your concerns.
The bottom line is if you do not feel you can communicate with an attorney, they are not the best lawyer for your personal injury case.
Discuss the fee structure in detail before you choose an attorney. Most New York City personal injury lawyers use a contingency fee agreement.
They are paid a percentage of the amount they recover in your case. You do not owe any attorneys’ fees if you do not receive any money for your claim.
However, there are two things to address when discussing fees and costs. First, ask the attorney if the percentage for the contingency fee increases if they file a lawsuit and/or go to trial. Typically, the contingency fee increases if your case goes to court because more time is involved in litigation than negotiating a settlement.
Second, ask the attorney who pays the costs of the case if they lose your case. There are always expenses involved in pursuing a personal injury case. Depending upon the case, the costs can total hundreds or thousands of dollars.
If you are responsible for paying costs if the attorney loses the case, you need to know because it could result in a large bill for you.
If you decide to hire a lawyer, make an appointment to sign the retainer agreement and contingency fee agreement.
Before signing any forms, clarify your responsibilities regarding your case and what your attorney will do for you to win your case. If you have any remaining questions, ask those before you sign anything.
If you are satisfied that this attorney is the best legal team to handle your case, read each page of the agreement. Ask questions if there are any terms you do not understand.
Usually, hiring a personal injury lawyer is in your best interest. Insurance companies have teams of professionals working to protect the company from liability by fighting claims. These individuals do not work for you and do not have your best interest as their top priority.
Hiring a lawyer levels the playing field. You have someone on your side looking out for your best interest.
Personal injury claims are complicated. You could make a mistake that hurts your case or accept a settlement offer much lower than the value of your personal injury claim.
Instead of trying to navigate the process alone, work with a lawyer to give yourself the best chance of a positive outcome in your case.
If you need legal assistance, contact the New York City personal injury lawyers at Law Offices of Jay S. Knispel Personal Injury Lawyers at your nearest location to schedule a free consultation.
We have two convenient locations in New York:
Law Offices of Jay S. Knispel Personal Injury Lawyers – New York City Office
450 7th Ave #1605
New York, NY 10123
Law Offices of Jay S. Knispel Personal Injury Lawyers – Brooklyn Office
26 Court St Suite 2511
Brooklyn, NY 11242