PERSONAL INJURY CASES -- FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Disclaimer: The information provided is generic in nature and does not constitute legal advice. In addition, an Attorney-Client relationship is not created by viewing this information.
Please Note: The information on this page refers to personal injury matters and does not always apply to other types of legal matters.
1. WHY DO I NEED AN ATTORNEY?
A few of the many reasons to retain an attorney include:
(1) To ensure that you do not lose your right to a cash judgment, or to sue, because of missing a statute of limitation. To make sure that you keep every right to sue the person(s) or business(es) responsible for your injury.
(2) To ensure that an insurance adjuster does not take advantage of you. If you are not represented by an attorney, insurance companies often will not offer you adequate compensation. To ensure that you receive full compensation for your injuries.
(3) To ensure that you obtain money for all of your past and future expenses, including, among other things, medical bills, loss of income, and pain and suffering (which may require a retained medical expert’s testimony). To pursue recovery of all your damages. It is important that you be adequately compensated for your personal injury.
2. IF I DO RETAIN AN ATTORNEY, WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT?
(1) Do not expect to pay your personal injury attorney until after your case has resolved. The personal injury cases at our law office are handled on a contingent fee basis, meaning you do not pay attorney fees unless your case is resolved.
(2) You should expect your attorney to work immediately on your case.
(3) You should expect to deal with your attorney directly, either by phone or in person. Attorneys should always promptly return calls from clients. If you call our office, Phil Hohenlohe will promptly return your call and provide case updates to you.
(4) You should expect to receive an assessment of your case’s value when your injuries and expenses can be fully assessed. Usually, that is after treatment with a doctor has concluded. Your attorney should continually contact your treating physicians for treatment updates.
(5) You should expect that your case will not be settled without your approval. Your attorney should discuss every settlement offer with you. Only after your approval has been secured will we settle a case.
3. HOW MUCH DO YOU CHARGE TO REVIEW A CASE?
At our law office, an initial appointment to discuss the facts of a potential case is free. If the case appears to have merit, we will advance the costs necessary to investigate and prosecute the claim. If we represent you, any costs advanced are reimbursed to your attorney at the time your settlement is disbursed, assuming we are able to make a recovery on your behalf. Additionally, your attorney will charge a contingency fee paid at the conclusion of your case.
4. WHAT IS A CONTINGENCY FEE?
A contingency fee is a legal fee that is dependent upon the successful outcome of a claim. Most attorneys use a contingency fee agreement in personal injury claims because injured clients often cannot afford to pay an attorney for service rendered on an hourly basis. The attorney will agree to take a certain percentage of the settlement from which the attorney's fees are paid. If there is no recovery, we receive no fee. Contingency fee agreements must be in writing signed by both the attorney and the client.
5. HOW OFTEN SHOULD I EXPECT MY ATTORNEY TO CONTACT ME?
From the beginning of the case, communication between attorney and client is important. Your attorney should regularly contact you to check in on the status of your medical treatment and update you on any developments in your case. At our law office, Phil Hohenlohe welcomes all telephone calls from clients and is committed to being available for his clients.
6. WHAT COSTS WILL I BE REQUIRED TO PAY?
Our law office includes in its contingent fee contract for personal injury cases a provision stating that we will advance the costs of pursuing your case. Therefore, as the case is ongoing, you do not have to worry about paying costs such as court filing fees, costs of investigation, or hiring a medical expert. You will be required to reimburse our law office for these costs only if we achieve a positive result for you.
7. WHAT IS MY CASE WORTH?
The value of a personal injury case is not a question that can be answered at the first visit to an attorney’s office. At our law office, we assess the value of a personal injury case only after we have obtained all the relevant medical information (including, among other things, a current prognosis, past and future medical expenses incurred, and any impairment to earning capacity), as well as information regarding loss of income (including past and future lost salary, wages, and profits). Additionally, the opinions of various experts, such as medical experts and economists, may be required to determine the total value of a case.
There is no formula or standardized method for evaluating the likely settlement value or jury verdict potential in a given case. Case value is case-specific. While we can make general predictions based upon results in trials and settlements of similar cases, no precise method exists for predicting how much an injured individual will recover in a given case.
8. WILL MY CASE GO TO TRIAL?
The majority of personal injury claims settle before trial. However, because we cannot predict whether or not a case will settle without trial, we prepare all cases in the same way, assuming that if a reasonable and fair settlement cannot be reached, we will take the matter to trial on behalf of our clients.
The information provided here is generic in nature and does not constitute legal advice. In addition, an Attorney-Client relationship is not created by viewing this information.