Finding the Right Personal Injury Attorney
Any personal injury is an unfortunate occurrence, and more so, when it occurs due to another party’s fault and you have to deal with it. No one says this is going to be easy but there is a way you can be paid for this legally so not going down this route just does not make any sense.
It allows the at fault person to get away with something they should not get away with.
The personal injury laws in Oregon have been instituted to protect your rights and ensure that you get adequately compensated for your losses stemming from such an injury.
The best way to get maximum legal compensation for your personal injury would be to get in touch with a reputable and established Oregon personal injury law firm.
Once you are ready for the first consultation with the attorney, it always helps if you have some idea in advance of what transpires during the consultation, and how best you can make use of this opportunity.
The experienced personal injury attorneys at Dwyer Williams Cherkoss will provide you a no-cost, no-pressure, and no-obligation consultation.
They will make you feel comfortable, address your situation with empathy, and provide you with the right legal advice and guidance. The legal counselors will encourage you to share a detailed account of how your personal injury occurred.
To make your initial personal injury consultation as productive as possible, here are 7 things that will help you prepare in advance, know what to expect, and carry the relevant documents. Personal injury cases are complex, and the following insights will help put your situation in clear perspective as best as possible at the initial consultation itself.
1. Knowledge about the Oregon Statue of Limitations
To begin with, you should be aware that Oregon law imposes a statute of limitations on all personal injury cases. This means, there is a time limit within which you are allowed to file a lawsuit for personal injury.
This may not be a concern for you if you are seeking a consultation with your lawyer quickly after your personal injury.
But if your circumstances are such that you have chosen to pursue your legal claim a long time after the injury occurred, you would need to take the Oregon statute into account. Civil action in case of personal injury in Oregon must be filed within two years. For property damage, the statute of limitations in the state is six years.
If your personal injury claim involves a minor, the time limit will not be counted until their 18th birthday. Wrongful death claims in Oregon must be filed within three years of the final injury of the deceased.
The time limit in case of medical malpractice claims in the state is five years from the date of the incident. If your injury occurred less than these specified time periods, you are eligible to file a personal injury lawsuit in Oregon.
2. Learn about Your Lawyer’s Background
Perhaps the quickest way to get some basic information about your attorney before the first personal injury consultation is to check out their law firm website. An informative and enriching website, providing clear information about the firm’s attorneys would give you a reasonable idea about their professional credentials.
The initial consultation is your opportunity to gain familiarity with the attorney and create a rapport with them. People usually like to trust their instincts and choose someone they like in the first instance.
However, it is better to be objective and consider their qualifications, background, experience, and the overall impression of their office and team members.
Therefore, if you meet the attorneys after you have acquired some background information from their official website, you will be in a better position to make a decision.
3. Documents to Carry for the First Consultation
Your Oregon personal injury lawyer would like to evaluate your case after reviewing as much relevant facts and information as possible. It is best to carry with you all documents pertaining to your accident. These may include:
- Any photographs related to the accident site, your physical injuries, and any damage to the property and vehicle
- Copy of the police report and accident report, if available
- Statement of any witnesses or their contact information
- Contact details and insurance information of the at-fault driver
- Any tickets or traffic citations
- Emergency room notes and doctor’s notes
- Reports of any x-ray, MRI, or other diagnostics and lab tests
- Copies of medical bills
- Your health insurance and automobile insurance policy copies
- Your self-written notes about the accident and injuries
By providing maximum possible documentation and factual details to your attorney, you will be able to receive the most accurate and realistic evaluation of your Oregon personal injury case.
4. Personal Notes about Your Accident and Injuries
While the police report and accident report will contain factual information about the incident and your medical reports will describe your injuries, it is possible that you may recall some critical information or facts later on while you are recovering from the initial shock and trauma.
Two vital issues in your Oregon personal injury case that will repeatedly manifest themselves at various junctures include:
- What really happened during your accident, which caused the personal injury claim?
- What type of injuries and pain did you experience as a result of that accident?
These two issues are likely to come up at virtually every stage of your legal claim process. Sometimes the critical details included in your personal notes could turn out to the most important leads in support of your case.
Detailed and meticulous notes prepared from your memory as soon as possible after the accident and through the process will almost certainly work in your favor and strengthen your claim. Your notes may include information, such as:
- What exactly occurred before, during and after the accident
- Date, time, and place
- Weather, road and traffic conditions
- Remarks, observations, or detailed accounts of witnesses
- What did you feel and experience when the incident occurred
- Nature and extent of your physical and psychological injuries
- Any pertinent comments of the paramedics, doctor, nurse or other medical staff, and what treatment they administered
- The impact of the injuries on your personal, professional, and social life
- Time missed at the workplace and any important events that had to be canceled
- The consequences of the accident on your family and your relationships
If you are able to provide such thorough and accurate information in an objective manner to your attorney during the initial consultation, it will help them build a better case in your favor.
If you avoid sharing crucial information with the attorney or forget or ignore some facts, the other party might bring it up later and it could weaken your case.
If you are unable to create these notes on your own because of the seriousness of your injury, seek help from a family member or friend to prepare detailed notes.
5. Prepare Your List of Questions for the Attorney/s in Advance
Prior to your appointment with the lawyer, it is an astute idea to write down all the questions that may have crossed your mind about your situation. Feel free to include any doubts, concerns or worries that may be troubling you.
Ask upfront about the attorney’s qualifications, experience and the law firm’s track record in handling personal injury cases in Oregon.
If you have worries about paying for your future medical treatment, or how long the settlement process may take, and how much your personal injury case may be worth, make sure you address these questions in a clear and direct manner with your attorney.
If you have everything clearly written down in advance, you will not miss anything pertinent during your consultation.
A dedicated Oregon personal injury attorney will take care to answer all your questions in a factual and accurate manner, and in a simple language that you understand.
6. Viability and Legal Position of Your Case
During your consultation with the attorney, they will objectively evaluate the viability and worth of your personal injury case based on the facts and information you provide. Not every personal injury case needs to go the court for claiming compensation.
In many cases, the attorney may be able to obtain the best possible settlement with the insurance company.
A solid law firm will provide you the most transparent and straightforward legal opinion about your case and its potential worth and viability.
Once you and your legal professional feel that you are both ready to go ahead together about pursuing your legal claim, they will explain to you the relevant Oregon laws that apply to your situation.
The attorney will spell out the best possible legal options and devise a carefully considered strategy in consultation with you with an aim to get you the maximum possible compensation.
7. Discuss the Fee Arrangement and Sign Documents
Once you and your attorney have chosen to proceed together on your Oregon personal injury claim, it is time to finalize the logistics.
An experienced personal injury lawyer will usually accept your case on a contingency fee basis. This means they will only get paid for their services if you recover compensation for your personal injury.
This works best for both sides because the injured victims have medical and other expenses to take care of, and may not be in a position to pay the attorney’s fee upfront from their own pocket. Contingency fee allows an individual to afford the most competent legal representation when they otherwise couldn’t.
It also incentivizes the law firm to take ownership of your case, because their time and energy is at stake and they have bills to pay. They are trying to survive just like you are. This is the most effective and widely accepted fee arrangement for personal injury cases in the US.
Once the fee has been agreed upon, you will sign a contract relating to the fees and giving limited powers to the attorney to sign documents and operate on your behalf (known as the “partial power of attorney”).
This will allow the law firm to handle most of the legal work for you, without them having to contact you or you having to be present for all the paperwork and documentation this case will generate. Yes, they will be communicating with you on all major issues.
Schedule Your Free Personal Injury Consultation Today!
The motivated and proven personal injury attorneys at Dwyer Williams Cherkoss in Oregon will provide you highly competent legal representation and work with total dedication to get you the best possible compensation.
For a no-cost, no-obligation consultation for your personal injury case, call the office of Dwyer Williams Cherkoss at 1-800-285-8678 today.