Am I Allowed to Switch Lawyers After Filing an Auto Accident Claim?
One of the main reasons car crash victims hire attorneys is so they can manage the legal process. That way, crash victims can focus on their treatment and know their claims are being managed properly.
The last thing victims want is to feel like their lawyer is not doing a good job. Not only does this raise questions about whether they will receive compensation, it may also cause victims to think about changing attorneys.
Below, our licensed Bloomington auto accident lawyers discuss switching lawyers in the middle of a claim. If you have questions about seeking compensation for a car crash injury, give our firm a call to schedule a free legal consultation. Our firm has obtained more than $150 million in compensation on behalf of our clients.
Free Case Review 24/7. Ph: (612) TSR-TIME.
Is it Too Late to Make a Switch?
This is an important question to consider if you are unhappy with your attorney. If a lawsuit has been filed, it may be next to impossible to get another lawyer to agree to take on your case. In fact, the judge in the case may not allow it.
Even if a lawsuit has not been filed, it may be difficult to make a change in the middle of settlement negotiations with the insurance company. Injury attorneys are not paid by the hour. They receive a percentage of the end result settlement or jury verdict. They also recover fronted costs to pursue the case. If another lawyer has been working on your case and is fired, he or she is still entitled to recoup for their time and expenses fronted. The fired attorney will file a lien with the involved insurance companies and their name may be added to any checks that are sent after settlement.
Wrapping up a case is often the hardest part. A new lawyer has to take over the case, often fix errors or redirect the case to a more positive direction. The new attorney may not want to assume the risk and work of a new case and have to repay the first attorney for their time and expenses. More work and less pay is often not enticing for any professional.
As a general rule, the less time the prior attorney has worked on the case, the easier it is to switch. If you are unsure if it may be too late to make a switch, you can reach out to another attorney you are considering and schedule a free consultation. Most personal injury law firms offer a free initial consultation to answer questions about taking legal action, including our law firm.
Do You Have a Good Reason for Making a Change?
Before making a change, you should review why you want to change lawyers. Injury victims often have many misconceptions about the legal process, and they are often anxious to recover compensation because of mounting medical bills or missed time at work.
Concerns About Delays
If you want to make a change because you think things are taking too long, that may not be true. Typically, claims are not settled until the victim has healed or reached maximum medical improvement. That could take several months or even years.
Delays are not always the fault of the attorney. Insurance companies are notorious for dragging their feet and making lowball offers. Insurance companies want to give attorneys and the victims they represent as little time as possible to file a lawsuit before the statute of limitations for filing a lawsuit runs out.
If you have concerns about how long it is taking, call your attorney to ask for an update. Your attorney should get back to you promptly and give you a detailed update. Experienced attorneys should understand concerns like these and be able to reassure their clients.
Talking to Your Lawyers
One of the biggest complaints from clients is their attorneys do not respond to calls or emails. If you are unhappy or have questions, reach out to your attorney. Give them a reasonable amount of time to respond. If despite your best effort to get answers, there is no response, then you might want to consider making a change.
Another complaint is when attorneys miss deadlines or constantly ask the insurance company for more time. This may indicate the attorney lacks experience or has taken on more cases than he or she can handle.
You should be able to trust your attorney and be able to communicate with him or her on a regular basis. Your lawyer should be interested in explaining things to you to help give you peace of mind.
The attorneys at TSR Injury Law are committed to answering your questions from the first day we represent you until the resolution of your case. We use teams of attorneys, secretaries and paralegals to always work on your case and communicate and respond to questions. The attorneys give out their cellphones and will always text, email or call back in a reasonable time. We believe in building strong relationships with clients because this is a difficult time in their life.
Lack of Relevant Experience
Another good reason for making a change is if you find out the attorney has not managed cases like yours before. This is something to research before hiring an attorney. If your attorney does not have much experience with car crash cases, or with injury cases like yours, he or she may be less likely to build a strong case or be able to recover maximum compensation.
Lack of Courtroom Experience
It is also important to have an attorney who regularly takes cases to court. It is unlikely you will need to go to court because most cases settle. However, insurance companies know the attorneys who rarely go to court. Insurers may not feel the need to make a better settlement offer to these attorneys because insurance companies do not think there is much of a chance of a lawsuit being filed. Without the fear of a potential jury verdict, there is no pressure to make the best most fair offer.
Call TSR Injury Law to Discuss Your Claim
Our firm works on contingency, which means our attorneys are not paid for their services unless our clients get paid. We do not charge fees up front before taking a case or working on a case. That means working with one of our licensed attorneys comes with no risk.
If you have any questions about the crash or your insurance claim, give us a call. We have obtained tens of millions in compensation for our clients, many of whom were injured in motor vehicle crashes.
TSR Injury Law is here to help. Call (612) TSR-TIME to learn more.