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What to Expect From a Consultation With an Injury Lawyer

If you are considering hiring a personal injury attorney to represent you in an accident claim, you may have questions about what to expect from the initial consultation. What questions should you be prepared to answer? What documents should you bring? What questions should you ask a potential attorney? Here we review these common questions and offer various tips on how to find the right Denver personal injury lawyer for your specific case. 

An Injury Lawyer Will Review the Facts of Your Case

The main purpose of an initial consultation is for the attorney to get an understanding of the circumstances of your case. After reviewing the facts, the attorney will then determine if you have a legitimate injury claim and if their firm would like to represent you. If they would like to take your case, they will discuss potential strategies to secure a fair settlement. The consultation is also an opportunity for you to decide if you would like to hire a lawyer. Neither party is obligated to work together based on the initial consultation. 

a woman meeting with an injury attorney

Because personal injury claims are evidence-based cases, the lawyer will want to evaluate many different factors. They want to create a detailed account of the incident and the injuries. This includes your own personal statement, documentation about the accident, medical documents pertaining to the injury, financial history, and future, and questions about your prognosis and quality of life. All of these elements will help the attorney determine what strategies they may use to fight for fair compensation on your behalf. 

An experienced lawyer will also explain the steps of the legal proceedings. They will outline the process of collecting evidence from the scene of the accident, obtaining various documentation about finances and medical treatment, reopening insurance claims, filing various legal documents, making requests to the court, depositions, and what to expect in the event the case goes to trial. Of course, these steps will be handled by the attorney, but a good personal injury lawyer will ensure that you understand what is going on. 

Assessing the Strengths and Weaknesses of Your Claim

When reviewing your case, the attorney will want to assess the strengths and weaknesses of your claim. Every claim has strengths and weaknesses. Strengths are items of evidence that strongly supports your case and weaknesses meaning areas that the opposing team will use against you. A good lawyer will know exactly how to prepare and defend you in weak areas. A case with too many weaknesses and not enough strengths may be rejected by the firm. 

Strengths could include a large amount of evidence of negligence by the responsible party, severe injuries, proof of serious loss of income, decreased quality of life, or long-term medical treatment plans.

Weaknesses could include evidence of personal negligence by the injured party, minor injuries, injuries with quick recovery times, or pre-existing injuries. Other issues like the passing of the statute of limitations, conflict of interest, or insufficient evidence pertaining to the cause of the accident could cause a lawyer to reject your case. 

A Personal injury Lawyer Can Provide an Estimate of What Your Claim is Worth

During legal consultation, the lawyer can provide an estimate of the potential compensation your claim may be awarded. They will calculate the economic and non-economic losses of your accident. Economic losses include:

  • Medical expenses - this includes medical bills, follow-up treatment, prescriptions for medication, rehabilitation, and accessibility equipment
  • Lost income - due to loss of employment, decreased earning capacity, or income lost due to time treating or healing from injuries 
  • Property damage - for example, expenses related to the loss of transportation or damages to a motor vehicle

Non-economic losses are commonly referred to as "pain and suffering" or emotional injuries. This includes mental anguish caused by physical pain, loss of relationships, and decreased quality of life.

Learn More: What Does a Personal Injury Lawyer Do?

How to Prepare for a Personal Injury Consultation

You may be wondering how you should prepare for the consultation. Outside of having your own personal statement ready, you should bring certain documents and mentally prepare to answer detailed and uncomfortable questions. 

Documents to Bring

Because personal injury cases are evidence-based, extensive documentation is crucial to a strong claim. Critical evidence includes:

  • Medical records 
  • Documentation of treatment
  • Income verification - pay stubs, W-2s, tax returns
  • Contact information of witnesses and witness statements
  • Photographs - of the accident scene, of injuries
  • Copies of police reports
  • Copy of insurance policy and communications from the insurance company
a legal book and gavel on a desk, text listing what to bring to a consultation with a lawyer over the image

It's important to come prepared with essential documents to back up your story.

Be Ready to Answer Questions About Your Claim

The personal injury lawyer will have many questions for you. They will ask for factual details about the accident and the extent of the injuries. Be prepared to answer precisely when and where the accident occurred and who was involved, including witnesses. 

They will also ask necessary but sometimes uncomfortable questions about your injuries. This includes questions about your employment, your finances, pre-existing conditions, and your quality of life including mental health, sexual health, and home life. They will also ask questions about hospital visits, doctor visits, and treatment plans.

Some questions may feel invasive and like the attorney is questioning your authenticity, but it's important to be prepared for this and not become defensive. On one hand, the lawyer is trying to determine if you are being honest about the situation and is trying to discover if you have any responsibility for the accident. They don't want to take on a case of someone trying to take advantage of the system. They ask these questions of everyone so don't take it personally. On the other hand, they are also preparing you for the types of questions the insurance lawyers will ask you in deposition and perhaps in a trial. 

Come Prepared with Your Own Questions To Ask The Lawyer

You should also prepare your own questions to ask the lawyer to determine if they have the right experience for your case. It's okay to shop around and have multiple consultations. Here are some suggested questions to ask a potential attorney:

  • Have you represented cases similar to mine? What was the outcome?
  • How long have you been practicing personal injury law?
  • How many cases have you had go to trial and what is your success rate?
  • How frequently will we communicate? Will I be able to contact my lawyer directly?
  • How long do you think the legal process for my case will take?
  • What are the common strategies you use for cases like mine?
  • How much does the injury lawyer charge? 

These questions are merely suggestions, feel free to use them to inspire other questions as well.

How Do I Schedule a Consultation?

To schedule a free initial case review with Denver Car Accident Lawyers you can call us or fill out the form on our contact page. We pride ourselves on our dedication to helping our clients receive the compensation they deserve. Let us handle the legal aspects of your claim so you can focus your energy on your recovery. Contact us today for your best chance at a favorable outcome.

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