Questions to Ask a Personal Injury Lawyer in South Carolina

March 18, 2024 / RP Legal

Knowing what to ask a personal injury lawyer can help make your consultation more effective. It can help you connect with the right attorney, which in turn can help your case.

Today, our Columbia personal injury attorneys share 21 example questions to ask a lawyer after an accident.

21 Questions to Ask When Hiring a Personal Injury Attorney

   1. Do I have a personal injury case?

You rely on your personal injury lawyer for guidance and counsel. You need honest advice about whether you have a case for compensation.

   2. What is the law that applies to my case?

Laws that may apply to a personal injury case come from state laws, federal law, and regulations. A lawyer should be able to generally explain the law that applies to your case. Knowing the law that applies is important because it is what decides your case.

   3. What is the case process for my type of case?

Just like there are many types of personal injury cases, there are a lot of different processes for claims.

Some claims start with a summons and complaint in court. Others go through an administrative process. Sometimes you start with an insurance claim. Ask your personal injury lawyer what to expect.

   4. Will my personal injury case go to trial?

Whether a personal injury case is likely to go to trial depends on the type of case and the specific facts of that case. Some people worry about going to trial, while others look forward to their day in court.

You can ask whether a trial is likely in your case. You can discuss whether you want a trial or want to avoid one.

   5. What are the strengths of my case?

One of the reasons that you have a personal injury lawyer is for their insight. The lawyer should be able to identify the strengths of your case and how to use them to your benefit.

   6. What are the weaknesses of my case?

If your case has weaknesses, you should know about them upfront. Your lawyer should help you identify clear expectations for litigation. They should explain how the weakness may impact the case and how they plan to address it on your behalf.

   7. How long will my personal injury case take?

Some personal injury cases can be resolved in a matter of weeks, but most take much longer. Knowing how long your case will take can help you develop clear expectations.

Sometimes, getting justice means taking the time to pursue a case in detail. The personal injury lawyer can explain how long they expect the case to take and why.

   8. What will my personal injury case strategy be?

There are multiple ways to approach a personal injury case. Legal motions and the discovery process can help advance your case. Negotiations must be strategic. Your lawyer should understand your goals and develop a personalized case strategy. A strategy may change as your case proceeds.

   9. Have you taken cases like mine to trial?

A qualified lawyer is ready for whatever may happen in your case. Your lawyer should be prepared to litigate your case in full. The defense must know that your lawyer is ready and willing to take your case to trial, if necessary.

   10. Do you practice the type of law that I need?

There are many different types of law. You need a lawyer who practices in your field. That way, they know legal procedures and they can anticipate important things. Your lawyer must handle the type of case that you have.

   11. What are your legal specialties?

Many lawyers specialize in just a few types of law. These specialties give them an advantage because they spend their time focusing on certain areas. By asking about their specialties, you can learn about the lawyer’s background and their qualifications to serve you.

   12. Can you give examples of similar cases that you have handled?

A lawyer who is qualified to handle your case should have examples of similar cases that they have worked on. Without giving personal details, they should provide examples of their relevant experience.

   13. Are you licensed in the location where my case will be filed?

To file a case in a certain court, the lawyer must be admitted to practice in that court system. There are state and federal courts, and each court admits practitioners. Your lawyer must be licensed for the court that will hear your case.

   14. Who from the law firm will be handling my case?

You need to be comfortable with the people who will be working on your case. You don’t want to have a consultation with one lawyer only to be passed off to another that you haven’t met. Ask who your lawyers will be throughout the case.

   15. What paralegals and assistants will I have contact with?

Paralegals and assistants are critical members of your team. You’ll have contact with them. Ask to meet the paralegals and assistants on your case so that you can establish a relationship with them.

   16. How do you communicate with clients?

Different people have different preferences for communication. You need to know how to expect communications from your lawyer. Ask if they typically communicate by phone, email, letters, or in other ways.

   17. How do I contact my personal injury lawyer?

Just like you need to know how your lawyer will contact you, you need to know how to contact your personal injury lawyer. Ask who your main contact person will be. Your lawyer should be willing to communicate with you in a way that makes you comfortable whether it is by phone, email, or another method.

   18. What does it cost to hire you as a personal injury lawyer?

Different personal injury lawyers have different ways of billing for services, and different fee structures. Ask them directly how much they charge and how billing works.

   19. Do you bill by the hour?

Some lawyers bill each hour of time they spend working on a case. Others bill as a percentage of the compensation that you receive. It might depend on the type of case that you have. It’s important to clearly understand how you will pay for your lawyer’s services.

   20. Can I review a written representation agreement?

Every personal injury lawyer should use written representation agreements. The agreement should explain the scope of the lawyer’s services and how billing for services works. It should always be in writing and signed.

Read the document carefully. The point of the document is to make sure that everyone understands the terms of representation, so ask any questions that you may have.

   21. What can I do to help my case?

Your lawyer is your advocate and guide. They may suggest things that you can do right now to help your case. Examples might be gathering names and contact information of people who might have knowledge of things for your case. It may be detailing your medical care, daily pain, and ways you have been hurt by your personal injury.

Get Answers From Our Personal Injury Lawyers in Columbia

At Rikard & Protopapas, our personal injury lawyers are ready to answer your questions. If you have been hurt, we invite you to come ask us these questions and any others that you want to ask.

We offer free consultations. Call 803-978-6111 or message us today.

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