General Personal Injury FAQs
Yes, consultations are free. Do not worry about the cost of your legal consultation. It is also completely confidential.
Every case is unique. Some settle before a lawsuit is filed while others while go to trial. A case can also settle at any time during any stage of a lawsuit. Most cases settle before trial for a variety of reasons. We will evaluate your case and advise you on what we think is best for you.
It’s impossible to determine early on what a case is worth. Some factors, however, that will determine what is a case may be worth include severity of injuries, pain and suffering, medical treatment, lost income and available insurance coverage.
If you were involved in a car accident, the primary coverage for your medical bills is no fault or PIP (personal injury protection). If you sustained injuries due to a trip and fall or other accident, your medical bills would be covered by your private health insurance.
A personal injury attorney can help you go up against big auto insurance companies and their team of lawyers. Your attorney already knows the personal injury laws and procedural rules and can effectively handle all the legal work for you.
He or she will act as your advocate throughout the entire case. Because an insurance company’s lawyers have the knowledge to reduce compensation and even deny the claim altogether, hiring an accident attorney is the best option for people who have sustained injuries, are faced with expensive medical bills or have experienced lost wages due to their injuries.
All states have placed limits on the amount of time you have to file a lawsuit in the state’s civil court system after you have suffered some type of harm. This kind of law is called a statute of limitations, and there are different deadlines depending on what type of case you want to file and what state you are filing in. This is important because if you fail to timely file your lawsuit, you may be prevented from doing so.
Before you take the steps to file a personal injury lawsuit, you are probably wondering how long the entire process will take. The popular belief that all lawsuits will drag on and on is not always true. This question, however, is difficult to answer because a variety of things can affect how long it takes for your case to resolve.
Determining liability (who is at fault), very serious injuries resulting in substantial damages, extensive, continued medical treatment making it difficult to assess your case’s value, insurance company delay tactics and a crowded court system all may play a part in how long your lawsuit may take.
You should consult with an attorney before any discussions with the opposing insurance company. The opposing insurance company’s interest is in direct conflict with your own. This means that any discussions with them, no matter how friendly the claims representative seems to be, have the potential to harm your claim. Talking to the other driver’s insurance company is rarely to your advantage, and could be very damaging to your claim.
Personal injury lawyers charge a “contingency fee” to take an injury case. A contingency fee means that the firm will not get paid any attorney’s fees unless you recover money in your case. The lawyer or law firm will get paid a percentage of money received from any insurance settlement or jury verdict.
The percentage that a lawyer can receive in a contingency fee agreement varies from state to state. The percentage typically ranges from 25 to 40 percent, and 33.33 percent (or one-third) is common. For example, if you have a 33.33% contingency fee arrangement and you recover $90,000 in your car accident case, your attorney will receive $30,000. Any disbursements charged to your case are also reimbursed to your attorney upon the successful conclusion of your case.