Being in a situation where you get injured can be overwhelming. If that injury is tied to a legal proceeding, things can be even more challenging. Many people don’t know the first thing about preparing for a legal process or finding and hiring an attorney. The following will explore some of the tips and steps you can apply to help make the process as smooth as possible.
Of course, every person’s personal injury is going to be different. This means that a lawyer might advise you to do something extra or to do something differently. It’s usually a good idea to follow the recommendations of a legal professional who has had access to all the details of your particular situation.
Stay Off Social Media
First and foremost, one of the things that can make any lawyer’s job more difficult is if you’re posting on social media leading up to or during a legal proceeding. Anything you like, share, comment on, or otherwise engage with can be used against you. Something as simple as liking a photo of your friend’s new kitten might be interpreted by a judge or insurance claims worker as you not being as injured as you claim to be. Play it safe and avoid all social media unless specifically instructed otherwise by your attorney. Yes, this might be tough, especially if you have a lot of built-up emotions, which is completely normal when you’ve just experienced a serious injury. This being said, social media platforms are not where you should direct this energy.
Find A Specialist
When searching for a lawyer, you’re going to want to narrow your search down by legal specialty. In your case, that means you’re looking for a lawyer who focuses on personal injury cases, or maybe even the particular type of injury you experienced like a truck accident lawyer, for instance. Each area of law is hyper-specific and requires years of experience to master. Even lawyers hire other lawyers outside their typical areas of expertise. This means if a corporate lawyer is getting divorced, she hires a divorce lawyer. If a divorce lawyer has been injured, she hires a personal injury lawyer.
Attend A Consultation
Many lawyers will offer a free consultation whereby you’ll get to meet them, go over your situation and listen to their recommendations and suggestions regarding your case. This is an excellent time to feel out whether a lawyer is right for you. Narrow your consultation options down further by looking for someone that fits your financial situation. Cain Law Office points out that some lawyers will forgo any payments until after a case is won, meaning you owe them nothing if the case is lost. Never assume you can’t afford a lawyer.
Make Sure They Can Explain Things
You want someone who can explain things to you in a way that you understand. The law is complicated and confusing, and the challenge of having to go through a legal proceeding while injured will only be compounded if you don’t understand what is happening or why.
Ensure You’re Not Interrupted Too Often
You’re also going to want to pay attention to how often you are interrupted during the consultation. If the phone is constantly ringing and the lawyer is being interrupted by other people at the firm, there is a good chance that it might be difficult to get and keep the lawyer’s attention if you decide to work with them.
Promises Of Outcome Are A Big Red Flag
Yes, an attorney has experience and should be able to give you a good idea of what you can reasonably expect, given the specifics of your case. This being said, if a lawyer promises a particular outcome, you need to keep looking. No attorney can guarantee an outcome, no matter how stacked in your favour your case seems to be.
Even if you’re unsure of what you want to do, it’s a good idea to meet with a lawyer earlier rather than later. This is because certain processes take time and have very strict deadlines that can easily be missed if you don’t have all the information upfront. More than this, given the echo from covid-19 that is still carrying forward, there is a bottleneck of cases that need to be seen, meaning things might take longer than usual. A lawyer will be able to advise you on how to get the ball rolling and what to do during these wait times.
The above tips should help you feel grounded in the middle of this chaotic time. It is crucial that you set up a support system for yourself where you have a friend, family member, or health professional to speak to.