Nervous about your first meeting with a personal injury attorney? It’s natural to feel overwhelmed.
Yet meeting with an attorney—quickly—is one of the best things you can do to ensure that your case is as strong as possible. Being fully prepared for your meeting is the next best thing.
Bring Your Evidence
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The purpose of the initial consultation is to determine the strength of your case. This helps the attorney determine whether it’s a good idea to take the case. It also helps to inform the strategy moving forward.
Bring as much as you have, including:
- Photos from the scene
- Witness names and numbers from the scene
- The responsible party’s contact information and insurance information
- Your medical bills
- Your pay stubs
- Doctor’s orders and instructions
- Discharge papers
- Bills for services associated with accident recovery
- The location of any video cameras you noticed or possible video footage that might exist
- A copy of the police or incident report
If possible, be as organized as possible when you bring this information. Place it in one file or binder that the attorney can look over for you.
Write Down Your Questions
Good questions to ask include:
- Given the facts of this case, what kind of settlement is it reasonable to expect?
- Do you expect any problems or pitfalls ahead?
- Is there additional evidence or documentation you need me to gather?
- What is your contingency fee percentage?
- Do you anticipate additional legal fees? What will those look like?
- How many cases like mine have you worked on?
Bring any additional questions which you have which are specific to your case.
During this interview, consider whether you are comfortable working with the attorney. You’re not just here to get answers about your case. You’re also here to determine whether you’ve chosen an attorney who is right for you. You’ll be working with this person for the next 18 to 24 months at least. You should feel confident that they will take care of you.
Be Prepared to Answer some Questions
We might have questions for you as well. For example:
- Have you already talked to the responsible party’s insurance company?
- Have you filed a claim with your own insurance company or companies?
- What sort of insurance coverage do you have?
- Did you say or do anything which could weaken your case?
- To your knowledge, it possible the other party could claim you’re responsible? Did you do anything which may have contributed to the accident?
- Do you have any preexisting conditions?
It’s important to be as honest as possible with your attorney. Any answers you give are protected by attorney-client privilege. Telling us the truth, even if it isn’t 100% favorable to your case, allows us to prepare a strategy. There’s no benefit to lying to us. We understand you might feel embarrassed about some aspects of your case, but we’re not here to judge you. We’re only here to help you get as much compensation as possible.
Get Help Today
The sooner you involve an attorney in your case, the better the results are likely to be.
Now that you know what to expect, reach out to our office to schedule a free case review today.