Medical negligence is one of the most complex areas in the legal field; this is because it comprises of the legal and medical professions. It’s a vast and confusing field especially for a lot of victims. Furthermore, it’s also an area that requires thorough expert investigations to ascertain the truth. The only sure way to win a medical negligence case is by having a shrewd legal practitioner by your side; attorneys are better placed at handling medical negligence issues.
Many victims are often scared to pursue their rightful compensation; this has been largely contributed by the lack of awareness in this subject. However, the truth is victims can receive their damages if they’ve hired an aggressive lawyer and have a solid case. A good example of a case that went successfully for the plaintiff is the Vanderbilt medical malpractice. Lawyers play a huge role in determining the outcome of a case; click here to find out more about hiring the right attorney.
The are many firms that offer legal services, this usually makes it hard to choose the most appropriate one. Certain guidelines can help you to make an informed decision before hiring an attorney. The following are some of the steps you can take to find the right legal representative for your case.
If you consider the vast nature of this field, it’s very necessary to conduct extensive research to find valuable information. A good place to start is the online resource; this is because it’ll save you time, energy, and money. You can begin by browsing the websites of top law firms in your state and taking the contacts of some of their attorneys. Be sure to narrow your list to the ones you believe are the most qualified to handle your case. Additionally, a good number of sites nowadays incorporate a chat feature that allows visitors to communicate with a representative in the law firm. You can use this function if you feel the need to get preceding information and clarification.
Meeting with Prospective Lawyers
Your next step will be meeting with several prospective lawyers; therefore, schedule a one-on-one meeting with the attorneys you’ve shortlisted. Experienced lawyers understand the importance of having such meetings and are often willing and ready to schedule an appointment with you. Meeting with several lawyers before hiring one is very important since it’ll give you a good perspective on who’ll handle your case best.
Examining Track Record
The level of experience is something you should take very seriously when vetting your prospective lawyers. Some of the things that can guide you when assessing an attorney’s experience include the number of medical negligence cases that he or she has won, as well as being able to give you testimonials from previous clients. Also, ensure that the cases the particular lawyer has worked on have some similarities with your case.
Negotiation and Settlements
When compared to court verdicts, settlements tend to offer a much faster payout. This usually requires the attorney to have good negotiation skills. It’s important to understand that not every case deserves to end with settlements. You should only agree to settle your case when the defendant offers a reasonable payout for the damages. If there isn’t any consensus, then a trial would be a better option. Present the topic of settlement and hear what each lawyer has to say.
Experience Inside the Courtroom
If a settlement can’t be agreed upon, then a court trial becomes the other obvious alternative. You should pick a lawyer who is articulate and fierce inside the courtroom to increase your chances of winning your case. Going through the attorney’s records of his/her court cases should give you a clear picture of the possible outcome when the lawyer handles your case. Some legal practitioners are honest enough to tell you their strengths and weakness. Getting such a person can help you make a more informed decision.
Form of Payment
This is a very crucial topic that needs to be discussed upfront to avoid any frictions and disagreements later when the case is proceeding. Medical malpractice cases are very costly to litigate, requiring expert witnesses, documentation processing, lawyer fees, and sometimes even consultations. You should bring this topic early in your discussion to ensure that both you and the lawyer are on the same page. Many attorneys nowadays agree to take a case on a contingency basis. This means that the lawyer will be paid a certain percentage of the compensation you’ve received. In the unfortunate event you lost the case, you still won’t pay the attorney any fee.
Who’ll be Handling your Case
Some of the lawyers you’ll meet work in huge firms; thus, it’s good to enquire about the legal practitioner who will be in charge of your case. Moreover, seek to know the method of communication your lawyer will be most comfortable to use. Victims usually have varying preferences; some like direct calls while others are very satisfied communicating via mail. Knowing these issues upfront will facilitate smooth and timely communication especially during emergencies.
Knowledge of Medical Field
This is yet another important factor you should include in your checklist. Since medical malpractice law consists of various health care aspects, a legal practitioner needs to have some knowledge of the medical field. Finding a lawyer who was once a healthcare provider can be of great benefit to you. The most common route that’s used by many law firms is working with a team of medical practitioners who help them with their cases. You should only hire a lawyer who has a very good understanding of the medical field.
Even though this feature as the last point on the list, it’s an issue that should be regarded highly. Med mal cases normally take extended periods before a verdict is given; therefore, always ensure that the attorney you will end up hiring is someone you’ll get along well.
Finding the right lawyer to work on your case can be a challenge. Still, the points outlined above serve as a helpful guide that you can follow when looking for a legal representative.