When choosing a personal injury attorney, one of the most important steps is meeting with your potential lawyer for a consultation. This initial meeting is your chance to ask questions about your case, learn about fees and expenses, and get to know the attorney. Here are some tips to help your case evaluation run smoothly.
Before the consultation
First, does the attorney offer a free case evaluation? Make sure you’re clear about that.
Next, bring all documents you have relating to your case to the meeting, such as medical records, medical bills, and correspondence with the insurance company. Ideally, you should make multiple copies of all your documents so that you can give one set to your lawyer and keep one or more at home.
Before the meeting, write down your legal problem in detail. To best represent you, your lawyer will need a full understanding of your case.
Take some time to write down a list of questions to ask during the consultation. You may want to ask how many years of experience the lawyer has and whether he or she has worked on cases similar to yours.
Bring material to take notes during the consultation, such as a pen and paper, laptop, tablet, or even a cell phone.
If the lawyer sends you any questionnaires before the meeting, be sure to fill them out completely.
During the consultation
When speaking with the attorney, be completely honest about your case. Everything you tell the lawyer during the meeting is confidential, even if you do not hire him or her after the initial consultation. It is in your best interest to give your attorney all relevant information.
Ask about fees, costs, and payment plans. When you come to an agreement, make sure you write it down and keep a copy. If you and your lawyer determine that your legal expenses will be more than $1,000, then the attorney must give you a copy of your fee agreement in writing.
Read documents before signing and make sure you understand them. If necessary, ask your lawyer to fully explain everything in a document before you sign it.
Make copies of all letters and documents the lawyer gives you for your own files, and keep them with the fee agreement between you and your lawyer.
Ask which method of communication your attorney prefers: e-mail, phone, fax or something else.
After the consultation
Your attorney will most likely ask you to send additional documents about your case to review in detail.
He or she may also give you advice on how to proceed with your case.
Here’s more information about how to choose a personal injury attorney.
Do you need to hire a personal injury lawyer?
To schedule a free case evaluation with an experienced personal injury attorney in South Carolina, contact the Law Office of F. Craig Wilkerson. Contact us online or call us at the phone numbers below:
- 803-324-7200 (Rock Hill attorneys)
- 803-289-7202 (Lancaster attorneys)
- 803-396-5200 (Fort Mill attorneys)