How to Pick a Workers Comp Attorney
If you have been injured at work, then you may be qualified to receive compensation for medical expenses, lost time at work, and other damages.
The process should be a simple as that, but unfortunately, many workers’ compensation cases are made more complex when an employer’s insurance company denies the claim. To protect yourself from being taken advantage of by greedy insurance companies, and receive the repayment you rightfully deserve, consult a workers’ comp lawyer as soon as possible following a work-related injury.
There are thousands of workers’ compensation attorneys vying for your business, but choosing one that will provide you with the best representation can be difficult. Time is important when filing a workers’ comp claim, but don’t rush into hiring an attorney that you won’t be happy with.
Here are four steps if you need help selecting a workers’ comp lawyer.
1. Look for workers’ compensation attorneys in your area.
There are plenty of resources online to find a lawyer in your area. Lawyers.com, state and local bar association websites, and even general search sites can provide you with a list of names to look into.
Another effective way to find a trustworthy attorney in your area is to ask around. Friends and family who have had experience with a law firm may be able to either suggest or warn you about their lawyer.
If you already have a lawyer that helps you with other legal matters but not workers’ compensation, then ask them for a recommendation.
2. Narrow the list.
Once you have a list of possible attorneys, narrow it down by doing some research and eliminating firms based on qualities you are looking for. For example, if you want an attorney who is close and easy to travel to, then get rid of the firms that are too far away. Or if you want a lawyer who is bilingual, then focus on the firms that offer this service.
Decide what strengths, advantages, and conveniences you are looking for in a workers’ compensation attorney, and eliminate the law firms that do not fit the bill.
3. Schedule a consultation.
When you have a short list of possible lawyers-2 or 3 is sufficient-contact each of them to schedule a consultation. In most cases, attorneys will not charge a fee for the first consultation, so take advantage of this opportunity.
At the consultation be sure to ask the attorney questions about their experience to determine if they will be able to properly handle your case. Some questions to get you started are:
- What is their background in workers’ compensation law?
- Do they regularly represent employees or employers?
- How long have they handled workers’ compensation cases?
- Have they had prior experience with your employer’s insurance company?
- Are they a good listener?
- Do you feel comfortable around them?
- Is the office staff friendly (since you may be interacting with them if they take on your case)?
4. Select an attorney.
Now that you have done research and met with the possible attorneys, it’s decision time. If all of the lawyers you met with agreed to take on your case, then pick the attorney who best answered your questions and who you felt the most comfortable with.
Remember, worker’s compensation cases can extend up to several years, depending on the case, so make sure the attorney you choose is not only capable of providing you with the best representation, but accessible and engaging enough to make you feel comfortable.
Most important of all, don’t rush into a decision. When it comes time to pick a workers’ compensation attorney, you should feel confident that they deserve to handle your case.