Catastrophic injury lawyer: When an accident leaves you with lifelong and devastating injuries, the challenges you face can seem overwhelming.
You may be concerned about how to pay for your medical bills, time off work and other related expenses. You might think that finding a lawyer is out of your reach. After all, these lawyers often advertise on television, which seems like it could only be accessible if you have money to spend on commercials. However, most personal injury attorneys offer free initial consultations through which they can evaluate your case and let you know whether they think it is worth pursuing or not.
Finding the right lawyer can make a world of difference in the outcome of your case. Below are 10 tips to help you find a catastrophic injury lawyer who will fight hard for you and your best interests:
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10 Tips to Help You Find a Catastrophic Injury Lawyer
Catastrophic injury is an unfortunate consequence of risky activities like skateboarding, snowboarding, or even horseback riding. These injuries often involve serious damage to the brain or spine and may require extensive medical treatment. Catastrophic injuries can be devastating not only on a personal level but also from a financial standpoint. The cost of medical care, time away from work, and physical therapy can quickly exceed what most people are prepared to pay out of pocket. The best way for you to protect yourself in case of such an unfortunate incident is by finding a lawyer who specializes in catastrophic injury claims. Here are 10 tips that will help you find a good lawyer if you or someone you know experiences a catastrophic injury:
Ask your doctor for recommendations.
When you visit your doctor for an injury, they’ll probably ask you if you have health insurance or whether you are willing to take out a small claim. If you’re not sure what type of claim you should file, ask for a recommendation for a lawyer. Your doctor might know a lawyer who specializes in your type of injury and can help you navigate the claims process to get the treatment that you need. Doctors are often swamped with patients, so having their recommendation might expedite the process of finding you a lawyer. If you don’t have medical insurance, you may still be able to find a lawyer through Legal Aid or your state bar association. Although they often specialize in different kinds of claims, they can provide you with a lawyer who can help you navigate the claims process as well as any other legal issues that you may need help with.
Check the yellow pages.
Yes, you can find a lawyer in the phone book — and while this might not be the first place you think to look for a catastrophic injury lawyer, it’s definitely worth checking out. Many law firms, especially smaller ones, advertise in the yellow pages. This can be a great resource for finding a lawyer who works on a contingency fee basis. If you work with a contingency fee lawyer, their payment comes out of whatever money you receive in your claim.
Hire a lawyer who specializes in catastrophic injury claims.
Catastrophic injury claims often involve dealing with insurance companies, and you want to make sure you go up against someone who knows what they’re doing. Many lawyers specialize in specific types of claims, such as medical malpractice claims, auto accidents, and slip and fall mishaps. If you hire a lawyer who specializes in the type of claim that you are dealing with, you’ll likely have a better shot at receiving the compensation you deserve. If you’re not sure what type of claim you should file, your lawyer will be able to tell you if you have a case and what type of claim you should file. They’ll also know what you need to prove in order to win your case. Lawyers who don’t specialize in catastrophic injury claims may not be as familiar with the types of cases that fall into this category. They may not know the correct ways to submit medical evidence, which could affect your settlement.
Be wary of advice from friends and family.
Although you might have a friend or family member who is a lawyer, this doesn’t mean that they’re qualified to represent you in a catastrophic injury claim. Most accidents that lead to a claim involve a lot of medical jargon. You’ll probably have to provide your doctor’s notes, blood tests, and imaging reports to the insurance company. If you’re represented by a lawyer who isn’t familiar with these medical documents, they might not be able to accurately describe your condition to the insurance company. If you hire a friend or family member who isn’t familiar with this type of documentation, it could take a lot longer to settle your claim.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions — especially during the initial meeting.
When you meet with a lawyer for the first time, there are probably a lot of questions that are running through your head. You’ll want to make sure that you use this opportunity to find out as much as you can about the claims process and how long it will take for your case to settle. You should also ask about how much the lawyer’s services will cost and if there are any expenses that are not included in the fee. You should also ask about the lawyer’s experience with similar cases: how many they’ve handled, what kind of settlements they’ve obtained, and how long they expect your specific case to take. If you’re not satisfied with the answers that you’re getting, don’t be afraid to walk away. There are plenty of other lawyers out there who can help you with your claim.
Get everything in writing before you sign any contract or agreement.
If you hire a lawyer on a contingency basis, make sure that you have everything in writing. This way, you’ll have a record of what you two agreed to and won’t be at risk for having to pay additional fees if the lawyer isn’t successful in your case. If you will be paying out of pocket, make sure that you get a written estimate of how much your claim is expected to cost. Ask for a breakdown of all the expenses involved so you’ll know how much you’re paying for each service.
Make sure you know what services your lawyer is providing and how much they’ll cost.
Different types of claims will require different services from your lawyer. If you’ve suffered a catastrophic injury and are filing a lawsuit, your lawyer will likely be handling everything from scheduling your doctor’s appointments to submitting your medical evidence. This might involve a significant amount of time on their part, and they’ll likely charge you for that time. Make sure you understand what you’re paying for and that you’re comfortable with the level of involvement that they have in your case. If you’re dealing with a smaller claim, like a car accident, the lawyer may charge you a fee based on a percentage of the settlement that you receive. Although this might be less expensive than a flat fee, it also comes with an additional risk: if you don’t receive a settlement and the lawyer doesn’t get paid, you might be responsible for paying the full amount.
Find out if there are any benefits that you’re entitled to receive.
If you’ve been in a catastrophic accident, you may be entitled to receive benefits from the government. For example, if you were injured because of a defect in a car or a medical device, you might be able to file a claim under the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or a particular statute like the Food and Drug Administration. You may also be entitled to Social Security Disability or Medicaid, which could help to cover your medical expenses. Your lawyer can help you determine if there are any benefits that you’re entitled to receive as a result of your injury.
Do your homework: check out the attorneys you’re considering hiring.
Before you hire a catastrophic injury lawyer, you should make sure that they have a good track record and a strong reputation. You can start with a simple Google search. Make sure that you read reviews from past clients and look for any warning signs that might suggest you should look for another attorney. You can also get in touch with your state’s Bar Association to see if there are any complaints or disciplinary actions against the attorney that you’re considering hiring. Catastrophic injury is an unfortunate consequence of risky activities like skateboarding, snowboarding, or even horseback riding. These injuries often involve serious damage to the brain or spine, and they can be devastating not only on a personal level but also from a financial standpoint. The best way for you to protect yourself in case of such an unfortunate incident is by finding a lawyer who specializes in catastrophic injury claims.