10 Things to Consider When Choosing a Worker's Comp Lawyer
If you have received a workplace injury, you will need the services of a worker’s compensation attorney. Worker’s compensation is a complex field of law, which is why it is important that you choose your attorney well. Make time to consider these factors before deciding on who you want to represent you.
Your attorney should be qualified to handle worker’s compensation cases. Your candidates should possess a law license showing that they are authorized to practice law in your state and be certified by the Ohio State Bar Association in worker’s compensation law.
You should consider how often the attorney has represented clients with workplace accidents and injuries similar to your own. If you have a complicated compensation claim, you don’t want an attorney who has just graduated from law school. Inquire about his or her success rate.
3. The Initial Consultation Experience
A complimentary, initial consultation is a convenient way to gauge an attorney’s attitude and professionalism and to see how he or she relates to you. You should evaluate the behavior and demeanor of anyone else who works with the attorney. Also, the attorney you work with should be leading this meeting, not support staff.
4. Legal Strategy
Some worker’s compensation cases require an aggressive approach, and there are situations in which litigation is unavoidable. Be sure that your attorney will be unafraid to bring your case to trial if it is necessary to obtain the compensation to which you are entitled. How often has the attorney settled claims as opposed to going to trial?
5. Who does the Attorney Normally Represent?
Verify whether the attorney also represents employers and their third-party workers’ compensation administrators. Having an attorney who is experienced representing both sides of a worker’s compensation claim can benefit you as your attorney may have valuable insight into the opposing side’s strategy.
6. Attorney Accessibility
Is the attorney easily reached by phone or amenable to meeting in the evening? You should be able to able to discuss your case in-depth with your attorney throughout the duration of your worker’s comp case.
7. Legal Fees
Ask for an estimate of how much it would take to handle your case and how the fees are structured. Make sure to ask about litigation-related expenses. Some lawfirms charge hourly rates, while others work on contingency, taking a predetermined percentage of your worker’s compensation settlement.
8. Case Management
Are you comfortable with how your case will be managed and by whom? More than one person may work on your case with your attorney. Make sure you know who will represent you during hearings.
9. Knowledge of Medical Complexities
The attorney should easily understand the medical aspects of your case, whether they are physical or mental in nature. He or she should also be able to work closely with medical professionals to bolster your case.
10. Reputation Among Other Attorneys
Ask around and see what type of reputation your prospective attorney has among his or her peers. Would other attorneys be comfortable with referring cases to this attorney or hiring the attorney for their own law firm?
The results of your worker’s compensation claim can have a long-lasting impact. Before signing a retainer agreement, do your due diligence to choose the right attorney for your case.