The DOs and DON'Ts of Hiring a Lawyer for an Occupational Asbestos Exposure Case
Filing a claim for occupational asbestos exposure is a complex legal procedure that requires the help of an expert. This gives rise to the first challenge claimants must face; finding the right lawyer. Here are the basic Do’s and Don’ts that can ease your work.
Do some prior researchIf you want to enhance your chances of finding a fitted lawyer for your exigencies, you need to do some self-study and see what options you've got. There are plenty ways to start your research, and the most efficient one is to look them up online. Thus, you can collect sufficient information about the lawyer's profile, a portfolio of services and see which one is closest to your location.
As you proceed with your investigation, don't forget to take down notes because browsing from page to page might be confusing and it's important to mark those specific law firms that appeal to you. Finally, make a list of the top 3 options you consider more fitted and reach out to those lawyers.
Even if the first encounter seems to go perfectly well, it's still recommended to meet with the other two lawyers as well because it will broaden your perspective and help you make an informed decision.
Besides, most firms don't charge you for the first consultation, so there's no reason not to benefit from this option.
Do ask lawyers about their experience with asbestos claimsThe whole point of hiring a lawyer is enhancing your chances to get a good settlement offer and recover significant money to support your medical expenses and not only. If your lawyer has a vast portfolio of successful asbestos claims, then he or she can obtain a favorable outcome for you as well. Don't shy to ask lawyers directly how experienced they are in occupational asbestos exposure cases and roughly how many claims they managed to settle.
Do try to get some referencesNowadays it's impossible to provide a service, of any type without being evaluated and lawyers are not excluded from this practice. So, try to dig deeper and see what feedback you can find relating to the services your prospect lawyers provided to former clients. Again, the digital environment is fairly resourceful, so you should be able to find ratings or reviews about the asbestos lawyers you consider working with.
However, nothing is more reliable than a direct testimony and to boost client's trust; some lawyers will agree to provide you direct references. If they do so, don't hesitate to talk to these people and see how the lawyer handled their case.
Do choose a lawyer who makes you feel comfortableIf the sole thought of meeting a particular lawyer bothers you, then you should move forward. Hire someone you can feel more comfortable with because this can turn out to be a long-term relationship. Sometimes occupational asbestos cases can take up to a couple of years if they end up in the court system. While settling a claim out of court is a faster resolution, we're still talking about several months before you start recovering money for your damages. No matter how your case develops, a good client-lawyer connection based on cooperation and mutual respect is a must.
Don't go for the first optionI know it's easier to halt at the first stop, but this might not be the wisest decision. I can't stop highlighting how important it is to do a prior investigation before signing an agreement with a lawyer. Don't skip this stage of the decision-making process because otherwise, you might end up working with a less experienced representative or paying larger fees.
If you're in poor health and can't focus on this, ask your family to help you find a savvy asbestos lawyer.
Don't hire an attorney based solely on one recommendationUnless the person who referred a lawyer to you is someone really close who can provide relevant insight, you shouldn't make a decision based on a recommendation. Getting positive feedback on a lawyer's practice is a good sign, but you should so some extra check-up before you agree to work with him or her. Moreover, being a good lawyer doesn't necessarily imply that person's good at what you need them to do for you. Even if they boast a terrific reputation, don't hire lawyers who are not experienced in asbestos claims.
Don't hesitate to ask money questionsYou might not feel at ease when discussing financial aspects, but it's necessary. First, let me say that your prospect lawyer should be the one who takes this initiative and clarifies money issues. If this doesn't happen, make sure you don't leave their office before you know exactly how they expect to get paid and their precise fees.
Being aware of the money matters also enables you to compare your choices easier and make the right decision.
Hire a lawyer who's too busy to handle your claim personally
Lawyers have a busy life, no doubt about it but if the one you plan to hire is too swamped to take care of your case, you might want to reconsider your choice. It's a common practice for lawyers to delegate their tasks to other people in their staff. Since your budget and well-being hinge on the outcome of your asbestos claim, you might want to work with a dedicated expert.
Besides, if your claim gets assigned to a young lawyer who's not that experienced in asbestos litigation, the results might not rise to your expectations.