Are you considering hiring a personal injury lawyer in the Houston area? This guide tells you everything you need to know.
Did you know that the average personal injury settlement is estimated to be around $53,000? If you have experienced an accidental injury, thanks to someone else’s negligence, there is a good chance that you can receive a deserved settlement in compensation.
However, to successfully win or settle a personal injury case, it is imperative that you have a good personal injury lawyer. There are a lot of personal injury attorneys out there here in Houston, but not all of them have a team with years of experience or the kind of lawyer team you want working on your case.
To make sure that you find the best personal injury lawyer in your area, you need to do some research and ask the right questions. Stay with us as we share with you how to discover the best lawyer in Houston, and what to ask them.
Search for Personal Injury Lawyers in Your Area
Whether you have been in a car accident or injured at work, the first thing to do (after you have received medical attention) is to locate a strong attorney for your case. The Sooner the better as your case gets weaker if you don’t take the appropriate steps for personal medical care, forms, pictures, and documentation, which a personal injury lawyer can immediately guide you.
The quickest way to get a list of potential lawyers together is to Google a term like “personal injury lawyer Houston, Texas.” Google will then show web results for the lawyers in Houston that are listed online.
From here, you can check out individual law firm sites, and get a feeling for the different firms and lawyers.
Make a list of the ones that catch your eye. From here, you can further whittle down your selection by doing the following.
Ask Any Lawyers You Know for Recommendations
Do you know someone who is a lawyer? If so, they are the perfect person to ask for a recommendation. Most lawyers will be familiar with other lawyers in the area, especially acclaimed ones.
However, if you do get a recommendation, be sure to check them out online and vet them like you would any other attorney. Don’t take them on faith alone.
Check Online Reviews
A great way to get an idea of an attorney’s performance is to scout out their online reviews. Please note that any attorneys that have a 4-star rating plus are good lawyers, this is according to multiple studies as it’s hard to please all clients, so a 4 plus rating will give you the top creme of the crop, anything below we would not recommend.
Start by looking at Google reviews for each potential law firm you have in mind. You can also take a look at their ratings on sites like Yelp.
Take note that one bad review here and there is not necessarily a warning bell. In any industry, there are bound to be unhappy customers from time to time. However, if you are seeing a general trend of client dissatisfaction, take this as a red flag.
On the other hand, strings of positive reviews detailing an attorney or law firm’s capabilities are a good sign.
Find Out How Long Each Personal Injury Lawyer Has Been Practicing
Another way to get an indication of a personal injury lawyer’s capabilities is to find out how long they and their team have been practicing.
While everyone has to start somewhere, you don’t want a green lawyer fresh from their bar exam handling your case. Especially when it comes to personal injury.
Instead, you want to make sure that the lawyer you pick has extensive experience behind them.
Some law firms will list how long they have been in business on their site. However, you should also enquire about the individual experience level of the attorney who is going to be potentially handling your case.
Make Sure They Specialize in Personal Injury
Besides vetting for experience, you should also check to make sure that any lawyer you are considering specializes in personal injury.
A lawyer who only handles personal injury cases will be much more experienced and adept at personal injury law than one who practices general law.
Just like you wouldn’t want your local GP to perform an operation on you or replace a tooth, neither do you want a general attorney to handle your personal injury case.
Ask About Trial Experience
Another important question to ask is how much trial experience a potential personal injury lawyer has.
This is very important. If your case goes to trial, you want to make sure that your attorney has courtroom experience behind them.
Many personal injury cases are often resolved out of court. This means that while a personal injury attorney might have been in the field for some time, they may have yet to appear in court.
Statistics indicate that only 30% of litigators experience more than two jury trials within their first five years of practice.
The takeaway? Make sure you ask about courtroom experience.
Ask About the Previous Client Results
All good lawyers should allow you to ask about previous client results. Do not feel that you can’t ask for this.
Of course, no attorney will refer you to an unhappy ex-client if they can help it. However, previous client results will give you some further insight into how they performed in the past and how they are positioned to perform in the future. Please note that according to law an attorney cannot share actual names or client information.
Enquire About Costs
Another vital area to enquire about is costs. Most law firms will mention their fee outline, especially if they work on a contingency basis like most personal injury lawyers.
Contingency simply means that you do not have to pay upfront lawyer fees. Nor will you have to pay your lawyer for their work if they lose the case.
However, if you win, they will be entitled to a portion of the settlement. It is imperative that you are crystal clear on what percentage this is, as well as any other costs that you need to be aware of, both if you lose and if you win.
Do You Need a Good Personal Injury Lawyer?
Picking a good personal injury lawyer is key to the success of your case. Now that you have read this guide on how to find one, we are confident that you will be able to vet out one of Texas’s best.
To begin with, make us your first candidate. We specialize in personal injury law. With over 25 years of specialized experience in personal injury claims across Texas, our attorneys are more than ready to take your case to trial if need be.
If you need some of the best personal injury expertise on your side, find out more about our personal injury legal representation services.
If you are ready to start asking us those key questions we listed above, contact Ivey Law Firm, and we will be happy to help.