Even though we spend a lot of our lives in our cars, many of us underestimate just how common car accidents really are. The truth is, we’re putting ourselves at a great amount of risk every time we get on the road.
If you’ve been in an auto accident as the result of another driver’s negligence, you’re no doubt interested in getting the compensation that you deserve. After all, you want to get your life back on track and regain the stability you have a right to.
Sitting down with a Houston auto accident attorney is the first step to achieving this goal. However, you might be unsure of what to ask or what information to obtain during your first sit-down consultation.
Need a brief on what to expect from your first meeting with an attorney? Read on and we’ll walk you through what you need to know.
1. Do I Have a Case?
An attorney can provide many things for a client who is worried about their future after an accident. An experienced attorney will have handled cases just like yours hundreds of times in the past and will know auto accident law inside and out.
As such, they will be uniquely qualified to comment on the realities of your case. When you sit down with an attorney for the first time, there’s a lot you’ll want to discuss.
However, a few things will be more important than the bottom line: Do you have a case?
An accident attorney should be able to make an informed decision on whether they think you are in a situation to receive compensation. They will be able to look at the specifics of your case and the damages done. Then they will make a strong determination on whether you will be able to collect.
The opinion of this attorney should be taken seriously, given their expertise and experience. If an attorney seems confident that you have a case, that should give you a lot of push to go forward with your plans.
In order to help an attorney make this determination, it’s a good idea to bring as much evidence from the accident as possible. This could include photos, videos, police reports, and witness statements. All of these would be helpful in providing an attorney with an accurate vision of what happened in the automobile accident.
2. Your Personal Responsibilities
Hiring an auto accident lawyer can be a great weight off of your shoulders. You are no longer alone in your search for compensation. You have someone to handle much of the complicated paperwork required. This can be a tremendous relief.
However, there are still many responsibilities a client in a personal injury case would have. When sitting down with an attorney, it’s a good idea to talk about what they would expect of you to help build your case.
In most cases, an attorney will stress the importance of your aid in gathering needed evidence. For example, seeing a doctor as soon as possible following an accident will be key. Following the medical advice of a doctor to avoid worsening your injuries will be just as important.
Your attorney might request other things of you depending on the specifics of your case. It’s important to discuss these expectations at this initial sit-down. That way, you can be prepared for the work you’ll need to do in the coming weeks.
3. The Attorney’s Qualifications
We spoke briefly earlier about the importance of an attorney’s background and experience with cases similar to yours. If you’re not sure about your attorney’s history, your consultation is a good time to get a handle on how qualified they truly are.
Don’t be shy. Take the time to talk to an attorney about how many years they have been practicing. Find out how much of their caseload deals with auto injuries as opposed to other types of personal injury cases.
Make sure they have all the required credentials and are fully licensed and registered in the state where you reside.
You want an attorney on your case who has handled and won cases just like yours many times in the past. If you find through your interview that the attorney has not handled many cases like yours, you might be better off finding someone more qualified for your particular case.
4. A Sense of Rapport
It may sound silly to say that an attorney’s personality is important to consider, but it really is. A personal injury lawyer is someone you’re going to be spending a great deal of time with.
You are going to need to rely on them, look to them for help, and be able to communicate with them clearly and quickly. All of these things can be hard to do if you and your attorney don’t see eye to eye or can’t get along on a human level.
Consider your consultation an opportunity to feel out this individual on a personal level. Are they going to be able to provide the communication that you need? Can you work with this person for many weeks?
Trust your gut and make sure you’re getting someone you can work well with. If there isn’t any rapport between you and your potential attorney, keep looking.
Houston Auto Accident Attorney Consultations
If you’re preparing to sit down with a Houston auto accident attorney, it’s important to know what details and information you should try to glean from this initial meeting. The above information can help you get started down the right path.
Are you ready to set up a consultation with a reputable personal injury law firm? Give us a call anytime for assistance.