Motorcycle Accident Attorney Los Angeles
According to the State Bar of California, there are over 190,000 licensed attorneys on active status in the state. This might seem like great news if you’re hunting for legal representation. However, it can also make it difficult to narrow down your options. When it comes to finding a motorcycle accident attorney, Los Angeles residents need to know how to partner with the right expert.
Upon the initial meeting with a potential motorcycle accident lawyer, it’s vital that clients inquire about specific areas of interest to ensure they choose the right legal representation. Here are seven important questions to ask before hiring an attorney.
1. Do You Specialize in Motorcycle Personal Injury Cases?
It’s essential to find out whether a firm has the right expertise for your case. Of the licensed attorneys in California, most will handle multiple areas of law—but motorcycle collisions may just be one minor facet of their expertise.
What you want to hear is that your attorney specializes in a few niche practice areas, ideally those related to automotive personal injury cases. Even better, look for an attorney who has in-depth familiarity with the location of your accident. This should include the nuances of local traffic laws and signals. Therefore, if your collision took place in LA, then make sure you are working with a Los Angeles law firm.
2. What Memberships, Honors, and Awards Have You Received?
As a baseline, you should expect any attorney you’re considering to be active in their state bar association. However, you’ll also want to look for signs that your attorneys have gone above and beyond this minimum standard by gaining wider recognition across the state.
So, when it comes to hiring the most experienced motorcycle accident attorney, Los Angeles residents should look for lawyers who have awards, memberships, high ratings, and other distinctions as proof of extraordinary skill and success. You can find this information by contacting their firm directly and researching them on the internet.
3. Who Will Be Handling My Case?
If you’re interviewing a large firm, you might assume that you’ll be partnered with an actual lawyer who will handle the case from start to finish. However, this assumption may be wrong. In fact, some firms have their paralegals and associates take on certain cases. While it’s not a problem for your lawyer to get support from their assistants, you’ll want to make sure you’re meeting the person or people you’ll be in contact with.
This is crucial for two reasons. First, you’ll want to make sure that a Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorney with comprehensive knowledge and experience is taking on your case. Second, you’ll need to make sure you feel comfortable with your entire team.
Some cases drag on for months, meaning you’ll be in communication with them often. In or even before the initial meeting, ask questions about who will be working with you regularly.
4. Can I Speak to a Past Client With a Similar Claim?
While it’s always helpful to skim a lawyer’s website for client testimonials, it can be difficult to know whether the success stories relate to claims like yours.
Asking to speak with a past client who had a similar case can give you a wealth of information about an attorney before you partner with them. Inquire about the ease of communication, the settlement or trial experience, and whether the attorney met their expectations.
5. Are You Prepared to Take My Case to Trial?
Few vehicle accident cases ever make it to trial, and the chances are good that your case will settle out of court. However, it’s important to make sure that your LA motorcycle accident lawyer is prepared for every outcome. A legal firm with a good trial record can make insurance adjusters more likely to give a fair settlement offer right away.
If negotiations outside of court are unsuccessful, your lawyer should move forward to litigate your claim. This will involve giving statements to the jury and explaining what you intend to prove during the trial.
Your lawyer will also help you understand what to do when you testify and present the case on your behalf. Depending on your claim, they may even solicit help from one or more experts, present witnesses to strengthen your claim, or cross-examine the other party’s witnesses.
To ensure that your legal team can handle every facet of your trial, ask about your lawyer’s trial experience, as well as their ideas on preparing evidence and statements for your case. Asking about past successful verdicts can give you an idea of your attorney’s capabilities.
6. What Fees Will You Charge?
There are two different fee structures legal firms typically use. Therefore, it’s crucial to ask which one your attorney prefers.
The firm may charge on an hourly basis. This breaks down into paying for about every 1/10th of an hour their team spends on your case. You will often pay less for the time of any associated paralegals or support staff.
Alternatively, they may use contingency-based fees. This means that your lawyer will work for you in return for a percentage (percentage will vary) of the amount they recover from a settlement or verdict.
Note that neither fee structure is inherently better than the other, and the fees may be negotiable. The cost will also vary from firm to firm. So, make sure to compare the prices of multiple lawyers. You can do this by asking for a copy of the fee agreement during each consultation.
7. What Can I Do to Strengthen My Case?
An experienced lawyer should be able to outline their own plans for your case. However, they should also be able to offer insights on what you can do on your own.
It’s easy to weaken your case by accident, even by something as simple as missing doctor’s appointments or failing to follow medical orders to avoid your normal activities. In addition, many people don’t realize that their social media posts can be used as evidence against them. This is why it’s crucial to avoid oversharing.
A good lawyer will advise you on these common pitfalls while explaining measures that will improve your chances of a successful claim. For example, some attorneys recommend keeping a journal of your pain and suffering. In addition, it’s also a good idea to take photos of your injury and how they have progressed. Depending on the circumstances of your collision, collect any documentation related to lost wages. This can include pay stubs and other workplace paperwork.
Find the Right Motorcycle Accident Attorney in Los Angeles
If you’ve endured a motorcycle accident, you know there’s a lot at stake. Finding the right lawyer can mean the difference between a successful outcome and a low settlement.
When it comes to hiring the best motorcycle accident attorney in Los Angeles, The Law Offices of Daniel Kim is here to help. With extensive experience both in and out of court, our team can help you earn maximum compensation for your claim.
Request a free consultation today and feel free to ask us the questions above for peace of mind.