The worst has happened: you were in a terrible traffic collision that unfortunately resulted in a death. The circumstances that surround such a tragic passing are incredibly challenging. What happens when the legal realities of the accident begin to catch up to you?
Finding a car accident lawyer you can trust to represent your claims is critical. Here’s how to find the right attorney.
1. Ask for Referrals
A personal connection can sometimes provide the ideal route to finding a lawyer you can trust. Ask friends and family members if they know any attorneys experienced with traffic fatality cases and wrongful death claims. Although you will still need to do additional research, referrals can save you time.
2. Look for a Car Accident Lawyer with Fatal Accident Experience
These cases are unique and often fraught with difficult emotions and complex legal challenges. Not all accident lawyers have the skills and experience to handle your case effectively. Look for a team that has specifically dealt with wrongful death cases in the past and can advise you appropriately.
3. Read Testimonials and Reviews
If you don’t have a personal referral, rely on testimonials for the law firms that you find. Keep in mind that testimonials may be slanted, but they will still give you a glimpse at some of a lawyer’s successful cases. Third-party reviews may also prove useful.
Example of a testimonial by Andrew in San Diego
I was in a motor vehicle accident involving a city vehicle. I had a witness who vouched for me as I was not at fault. I searched for a lawyer to handle my case and was recommended by a friend to contact Adam Hepburn. I reached out to him and with in a few days had a consultation in person. From the moment we sat down and spoke I could tell he was genuine and honest. He made me feel comfortable and eased all the stress I had been holding onto. Through out the whole process he kept me informed, walked me through all the steps I needed to take and answered all of my questions as this was my first ever experience using a lawyer. He is a easy to work with and achieved a good outcome for my case. I highly recommend him for anyone in need of attorney services.
4. Take Advantage of Free Consultations
The best way to determine if a lawyer is a good fit for you and your case is to meet with them. Most firms offer free initial consultations to determine whether your case is suitable for their lawyers’ experience and if you feel comfortable with the team. Use these meetings to find someone who inspires confidence.
5. Ask Lots of Questions to Potential Candidates
Don’t be a passive observer in your own case. Instead, ask questions when you visit with lawyers, as if you were giving a job interview—in a way, that’s exactly what you’re doing.
6. Use a Local Bar Attorney Referral Service
Still having trouble finding a suitable lawyer in San Diego? Contact the local bar association. Many bar associations have attorney referral services with general categories of legal practice. Advise the association on the type of help that you need and you may receive a list of potential firms to explore.
7. Examine Any Potential Lawyer’s Qualifications and Credentials
Once you think that you’ve found the right lawyer, how do you make sure that it’s a perfect fit? Start by finding out about their track record. Where did they earn their qualifications, and how much time have they spent in the courtroom? What kind of reputation do they have in their field? These answers will inform your choice.
8. Choose a Team That You Can Afford
Money is, unfortunately, an obstacle in securing legal help. Look for attorneys who will openly and clearly discuss fee arrangements with you and explain why they may be a wise investment for you. Most wrongful death claims are on a “contingency fee” basis, which means the attorney’s fees come out of the final settlement or judgement. Make sure you ask your attorney how these fees and costs are calculated.
9. Choose a Team with Local Connections
A law firm with a strong local reputation is likely to have earned it for a reason. Firms that are active in the community are often a source of trustworthy representation.
10. Choose Firms Large Enough to Fight, But Small Enough to Care
A larger team equals more minds to work on your case, but a tight-knit one ensures a personal touch that keeps you from feeling disconnected. The right lawyer will have the legal firepower to back you up without being too big to connect with you personally.
With these tips in mind, find the legal assistance that you require today.