Law firm billboards and commercials featuring people who have settled large claims can paint a hazy picture of what hiring a lawyer is really like. There are many myths about hiring an attorney. These clouded truths can either lower or raise your expectations of legal representation. The partners at deGravelles & Palmintier provide clarity with these five truths to debunk the myths and give you the facts.
Myth: Hiring an attorney is too expensive.
Truth: For most law firms, clients don’t have to pay a penny for an attorney out of pocket. Whenever a client obtains their maximum fair recovery, a percentage of the compensation goes toward the law firm. If a case is unsuccessful, the client is not charged.
Myth: They got a big settlement, so you will, too.
Truth: All cases are not created equally. While the amount recovered from a case may be similar to that obtained in another client’s case, there’s no guarantee that you will receive the same amount. Attorneys work hard to ensure their clients receive the maximum amount of compensation to cover their particular injury and any losses, in the context of the facts and circumstances of each client’s case. Every client has a unique situation, and fair recovery is not a one-size-fits-all scenario.
Truth: Although insurance companies do provide coverage to their clients, it is common for these companies to compensate only a portion of what a client needs for their injury. Attorneys are here to review insurance policies for accuracy and to confirm whether the policies provide clients the coverage needed for their road to recovery. It is typically the better option to have a legal professional on your side who knows the law and facts about insurance policies.
Myth: Your case will settle quickly.
Truth: It is true that some cases can settle quickly. However, there is no guarantee that your specific case will do so. Your case is uniquely different from other clients’ circumstances. The legal process can take a great deal of time to navigate and there may be a great deal of resistance from insurance companies and their lawyers. Good lawyers will push the process along as fast as they can while making sure they are taking all necessary steps to secure the maximum fair recovery for their client. Often a “quick settlement” means a settlement in which the client doesn’t get what the case is truly worth. Likewise, maximum fair recovery may take some time.
Myth: Hiring an attorney means that you are going to court.
Truth: Statistics show that 95% of cases actually settle before making it to trial. A case goes to court if the parties involved are unable to reach a compromise. Otherwise, a settlement is negotiated to avoid a trial. Although most cases do settle, a client needs a lawyer who is ready, willing, and able to take the case to court if necessary to secure your maximum fair recovery. If insurance companies and their lawyers see an injured victim with a lawyer who has done the work to prepare a case for trial, they are likely to settle. And for the 5% of cases that do end up in a courtroom, an experienced trial attorney is a must.
Myth: Any attorney can represent you.
Truth: This is far from the truth. Every attorney has areas of specialization. For an example, an attorney that represents injured clients may not necessarily also practice criminal law. Choosing an lawyer that specializes in a practice that meets your specific needs is the most essential step in choosing someone to represent you. If you reach out to a law firm and their attorneys are unable to do so, they will be happy to refer you to an attorney in their network who specializes in the practice your case requires. A potential client should interview potential attorneys and ask about their background and experience. After all, you wouldn’t see your dermatologist for brain surgery.
It’s important to be well informed before investing your time and trust in legal representation. With this knowledge, you can approach your decision to hire an attorney more confidently and with the right expectations. The firm of deGravelles & Palmintier has represented severely injured individuals and their families for over 30 years and have a record of positive results. Its team of attorneys operates with a mindset of integrity, prioritizing their clients’ needs throughout the legal process and beyond. If you or a loved one are injured, the firm of deGravelles & Palmintier would be more than happy to set up a time to talk to you. Click here or call 225.325.7935.