If you were injured in an accident in Cedar Rapids where the other party was reckless or negligent, you should consider meeting a personal injury lawyer. Personal injury laws are often confusing, and it can be hard to figure out everything independently, especially if you have never filed a claim previously. We have enlisted six tips for choosing a Cedar Rapids personal injury lawyer.
1. Start without delay
You will typically have two years to file a civil lawsuit following a personal injury in Iowa. That may sound like a lot of time, but if you miss out on crucial evidence in the early stages, you may have difficulty proving your claim. If you want to seek legal advice, the right time is now. The earlier you hire an injury lawyer, the more time they will have to work on the case.
2. Look for experience
A medical malpractice suit differs from a personal injury case involving premise liability. It would help if you had an injury lawyer who has experience with similar cases, and therefore, the work profile of the lawyer is something that should take priority. You can rely on the attorney for what they have done so far, which can change your case.
3. Ask questions
How long have you been practicing personal injury law in Cedar Rapids? Are you locally based here? What kind of cases do you usually encounter? What are some of the top settlements? What are the landmark cases in your career? These are some of the common questions you need to ask when you meet a lawyer.
4. Discuss the expenses
Before we talk about the fee of an injury lawyer, let’s talk about the other costs related to the case. For instance, you are expected to pay for the investigation and court fees, as applicable, and your lawyer should explain these expenses in detail. In some cases, lawyers may pay for these things before you get paid, and you will have to repay them from the settlement.
5. Be clear about their fee
Usually, injury lawyers work on a contingency fee. This means that the outcome of the case decides whether the attorney gets their fee. If you win, the lawyer may take anywhere between 25% and 40% as their fee, although the standard norm is 33% for most cases. Ask the attorney to draft an engagement letter or a contract that states everything in writing.
6. Get an idea of the work involved
Your lawyer should explain what they would do for you. They must also explain what the process will be like and their approach to your case. Ensure that the lawyer is responsible for all relevant negotiations and discussions, even if it involves the attorneys of the other party. They should also explain whether they would be willing to go to court if the case demands and the evidence they would use at trial.
Look for injury lawyers who have worked on cases that required a trial, as you may need such expertise for your claim.