Meeting with a personal injury for the first time can be somewhat intimidating for some individuals. However, like anything else, knowing what to expect in the first meeting can make the process feel much more comfortable. Below are some things to expect during the first meeting with a personal injury attorney.
- Tell Your Story
During your fist conference with an attorney, be prepared to explain to him or her what happened. The attorney will want to know where you were before you were injured and how the incident took place. It is important to know exactly where the incident occurred as there may be a police report or some other type of incident report available for him or her to obtain. For example, if you were in a car accident and the police arrived at the scene, a police report should be available for purchase. It is also important to know the location of the incident if your attorney thinks it is necessary to file a lawsuit. Where the incident occurred assists the attorney in determining which county he or she will need to file a lawsuit.
The personal injury attorney will also want to know how you are feeling. Make sure you are able to communicate every part of your body from head to toe that was affected in the incident. This is important for several reasons. First and foremost, knowing where you are experiencing pain will assist the attorney in helping you receive the correct medical treatment. In addition, you may have initial pain in some areas of your body that over time resolve. Even if the pain resolves, you still may have a claim for personal injury for those areas of your body that ultimately resolved. For example, if you initially have headaches following an accident, but they only last for a week, it is still important for the attorney to document that you experienced headaches for that amount of time in order to demand appropriate compensation for that injury.
- Information Collected
After you tell your attorney how the incident occurred and what kind of injuries you experienced as a result of the incident, be prepared for your attorney to ask you several questions. Your attorney will want to know simple things like your contact information, but he or she will also need your date of birth and social security number. This information enables the attorney to request your medical records and bills from your healthcare providers. In addition, the attorney will also want to know what kind of insurance coverage you have, especially if you were involved in a car accident. Your attorney needs to know this information to determine what avenues of recovery are available to you. For example, the attorney will want to know whether you have Personal Injury Protection and/or Underinsured Motorist Coverage.
- Personal Injury Process
After your attorney hears your version of events and collects all of the information he or she needs from you, he or she should explain the personal injury process. He or she should explain to you the timeline involved in making a claim and what to expect should you not be able to resolve your claim prior to filing a lawsuit. If you have not been involved in a personal injury claim before, this is your opportunity to ask questions.
- No Consultation Fee
Most personal injury law firms do not charge a fee for the first consultation. In addition, most personal injury firms do not charge an hourly rate for his or her representation of you. Rather, personal injury attorneys work on a contingency-fee basis which means that they do not get paid unless they recover successfully for you.
- After the First Meeting
After your first consultation, the attorney may have a list of items that they need from you. Most of the items include copies of insurance cards and/or any documentation you have related to the incident or any medical records you have in your possession. The attorney will also want to make sure that you get into your doctor for medical treatment for your injuries. It is imperative that you get in for treatment as soon as possible after an incident and a personal injury attorney can assist you with finding the right medical provider for your injuries.
Snedaker Law is a personal injury law firm. We take time with our clients to make sure that they know exactly what to expect before moving forward with a personal injury claim. In you have been involved in an accident in Sanford, Lake Mary, or Altamonte Springs, our team is ready to advocate for you.