What is a Personal Injury Attorney?
How You Can Benefit by Hiring a Personal Injury Lawyer
We get asked all the time, “What is a personal injury attorney?” and the short answer is this: A personal injury attorney is a lawyer who provides legal representation to a client who has been injured in an accident. These types of incidents can range from negligent scenarios, like workplace injury, and even intentional acts.
A great example of personal injury cases is coal mining accidents, like the significant coal mining disaster at Upper Big Branch Mine in Raleigh County, West Virginia. Pat Jacobs represented several of the miners’ families and provided support through that unimaginable time.
Coal mining accidents typically occur after an employer ignores safety regulations until it is too late. The U.S. Department of Labor estimates that 25 out of 100,000 coal miners suffer from a severe coal mining injury each year. If you are a victim of a coal mining accident, there is a good chance that you may get monetary compensation for your hospital bills, lost income, and other expenses.
Why Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer?When you file a personal injury claim, you want to ensure that no stone is left unturned because even a tiny error can compromise the integrity of the claim. A personal injury lawyer can help you provide strong evidence in your case, like presenting accident reports, medical records, eyewitness statements, photographs, and more. This relevant information is complex for the injured party to gather due to the need to recover or not being able to present this information themselves. Plus, insurance adjusters often try to deny or limit the compensation that the injured party should receive, so having an experienced individual handle your case is best. Remember, the goal of a personal injury attorney is to obtain compensation for clients to help ease the financial burden that the injury has caused, so do not hesitate to move forward with scheduling a consultation to see if you qualify for such benefits.
When Should You Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer?If your accident resulted in the death or severe injury of another individual, left you temporarily or permanently disabled, absent from work, you or your loved ones have been impacted emotionally, if you have missed work, or if you are concerned that the settlement offer will not cover your losses like lost wages or medical bills, it is time to contact a personal injury lawyer. Additionally, if you have been injured due to someone’s negligence, recklessness, or misconduct, or if you have been hurt due to an item on the following list, you should hire a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible to ensure that the statute of limitations on your case has not run out. A personal injury attorney can help you determine if and when your statute of limitations is up, so do not hesitate to contact a lawyer immediately:
- Medical malpractice
- Car accident
- Coal mining incident
- Wrongful death
- Workplace injury
- Products liability
- Premises liability
- Nursing home abuse or neglect
- Animal and dog bites
- Asbestos exposure
- And more – be sure to ask during your consultation if your injury qualifies as a personal injury case.
How Do You Find a Good Personal Injury Lawyer?Setting up a consultation can help you determine what questions you have and may even clarify the steps to come. To determine who to set up consultations with, you should consult friends or coworkers who may have gone through similar experiences that you are encountering now for a recommendation. You can also check online for personal injury attorneys in your area on Google or Facebook and review testimonials from past clients. Other items to consider when choosing an attorney include considering how long the attorney has been in practice, how much the legal fees will cost, if the lawyer has experience specific to personal injury, and if they can answer all of your questions. You also want to make sure that they are accessible to you and determine the best way to be contacted. Pay attention to how each attorney you meet with answers your questions; you want to feel confident in your decision and feel that your overall experience with that attorney was trustworthy and like you have a great general connection.
How Much Does a Personal Injury Lawyer Cost?In the majority of personal injury cases, legal fees are determined on a contingency basis. This means that unless you win your case, you do not have to pay for legal services. However, if the case is won, a percentage of your compensation will be paid to your attorney. Often, the law firm will pay for the expenses that your case accumulates until you receive payment for your case if you win. Some attorneys also offer free consultations, so you should be able to meet with multiple lawyers before choosing one that is right for you.
What Questions Should You Ask a Personal Injury Lawyer?To recap, you should be asking any questions you may have for your personal injury lawyer to answer without prejudice or judgment; you need to feel confident in your attorney and know that they have your best interests in mind, no matter what.
Here are some questions you can ask your attorney:
- What experience do you have handling personal injury cases like mine?
- How long does it take to determine a ruling on a case like mine?
- Will you or a staff member be handling my case?
- How and when can I contact you?
- What do I need to do throughout the proceedings?
- Will you prepare me for court?
- How much do your services cost?
- If I lose, will I be responsible for any legal fees?
- What is the statute of limitations on my case?
- Do you feel confident in handling my case? What are the next steps?