What You Need to Know Before Hiring a Car Accident Attorney in South Carolina
Dealing with the aftermath of a car wreck or trucking accident can be an incredibly stressful time for anyone. Giving the police a statement and then notifying your insurance company is often just the beginning. Then the real headache begins when you have to take time off to heal, go to physical therapy, miss work, wait for the check to come in to cover the cost of repairs, find a rental vehicle, and much more. If you’ve suffered an injury during the accident, finding a personal injury lawyer to handle your settlement can feel like another stressful task when it’s on top of everything else.
If you have never hired an attorney before, it’s normal to have questions about the process. But finding a personal injury lawyer in Greenville, South Carolina doesn’t have to be overwhelming.
We’ve put together a list of things you should consider while searching for a personal injury attorney in the Upstate of South Carolina.
Do You Really Need An Attorney?
Hiring an experienced lawyer is the only way to ensure you maximize the insurance financial settlement if you’ve been injured in a car or truck accident. It’s no secret that insurance companies are protecting their bottom line, often at the expense of paying the full compensation you’re due. Insurance companies are invested in their own best interests, which is why it’s crucial to hire a qualified attorney to negotiate on your behalf.
If you’re not sure what to look for when hiring a personal injury lawyer, we’ve put together a list of qualities you should consider.
What Should I Look For In a Personal Injury Attorney?
A good attorney will listen carefully to you and all the details of your case, ensuring they fully understand all the facts. They should also invest time in discussing all your potential legal options. Since no two cases are the same, a good lawyer will help you to decide on the best and most personalized course of action to secure a personal injury settlement.
2. Prompt Communication
Timely communication is a good indicator of a well-organized and client-focused law office. The time it takes for someone from the law office to reach out to you after your first consultation is normally a good indicator of how reliable they will be. This is particularly important when dealing with personal injury cases since there are strict deadlines to meet when filing paperwork.
Maybe you have an idea about what your car accident case is worth, or maybe you have no idea. A good personal injury attorney will be honest with you from the start. After reviewing your case, they should set clear expectations for what you can expect in terms of financial compensation and how long it will take to resolve your case. While no two insurance settlements are alike and there are no guarantees, an experienced lawyer can help you understand all the possible outcomes in advance so you are not surprised later.
A verbal agreement should never be considered sufficient. A trustworthy personal injury attorney should give you a thorough written agreement that clearly outlines the responsibilities of all parties and gives you clarity on any fees that may come later. If you have received an agreement, make sure you read it thoroughly and ask any questions you might have upfront. Remember, a good injury attorney will act as your partner throughout the case, so they won’t get defensive or have any problem making sure you understand what you’re signing.
5. Thinking of Your Needs First
Some unscrupulous lawyers will pressure you to accept a personal injury settlement prematurely. They do this because fighting for the full compensation you deserve takes time. A quick settlement, however, guarantees them a quick payday. Other lawyers may do the opposite and pressure you to pass on settling, opting for a larger settlement in order to pad their own resumes.
The fact is that the final decision on what route to take should always be yours. If your attorney has been upfront with you from the beginning, setting reasonable expectations and providing timely updates, you should feel comfortable about taking the next step, whether that is accepting a settlement or going to trial.
Every good lawyer will provide counsel, but if you feel undue pressure to take action against your wishes, it may be time to seek new representation.
What Should You Expect To Pay?
Most personal injury lawyers do not require payment in advance. If an attorney is trying to charge you before you receive a settlement, that’s a red flag. Most personal injury lawyers work on a contingency basis, meaning they do not get paid unless you win your case.
In general, a personal injury attorney will generally charge a fee between 30-40% of the insurance settlement you receive. While it may sound expensive, it’s important to remember that an experienced attorney can secure an insurance settlement of significantly more value than you would without legal counsel.
Whether you need to negotiate a settlement or file a lawsuit, a personal injury lawyer will provide the expert legal advice and support you need to navigate your claim and recovery.
If you want to ensure you get the best settlement possible, a lawyer with experience in both settling and winning at trial will be your best resource.