Being plunged into the legal system suddenly, oblivious of the processes, and with little or no knowledge of the legal jargon – it’s nothing short of intimidating! Many people who believe they have suffered improper patient care do not know what steps to take to seek justice for the harm suffered.
A malpractice medical lawyer, in this case, will guide you throughout the process, helping you receive your deserved compensation.
But, how do you choose your perfect fit?
Here are factors that should remain top of mind when hiring a malpractice attorney.
Area of Expertise
Medical malpractice lawsuits are burdensome, and choosing a board-certified professional liability lawyer with a specific focus on medical malpractice is imperative. Preferably, a higher percentage of their caseload should be related to your particular injury.
A certified medical malpractice attorney understands the intricacies of medical law. Going further and hiring an experienced one strategically positions you for success since they have a wealth of experience proving that the injuries sustained resulted from negligence.
Apart from possessing exceptional settlement negotiation skills and understanding the value of a claim, experienced malpractice attorneys can speculate outcomes and make logical judgments regarding the case. This allows them to predict any unprecedented issues that may complicate the case beforehand, taking the necessary measures to avoid them.
Researching an attorney’s track record before hiring them is of the utmost importance. Your ideal lawyer for medical malpractice should have successful out-of-court settlements as well as triumphant verdicts – as there are perks to this.
During the litigation process, you will need to schedule meetings with the defendant’s lawyer and the hospital insurer carrier, who can be tough nuts to crack. However, having a respected and reputable attorney with a winning track record means they have effective legal strategies they can use to remain in the driver’s seat amidst a tough defense.
Also, an attorney’s winning streak is more likely to compel the defendant’s team to offer reasonable compensation.
Team and Connections
To improve your chances of winning the case, your preferred malpractice medical attorney should be ready to review your case in detail.
Considering the endless paperwork needed for a malpractice claim even to be considered, your lawyer will need a solid team that will help collect the necessary evidence required. For instance, they will need to file the Affidavit of merit, organize medical records and bills, present the history of prescription drugs, and other pertinent medical records.
They also need the right connections to find a medical expert witness well-versed in your medical condition and the injuries sustained. This witness should be able to decipher complex medical terminologies into layman’s language to ensure the jury understands the depth of your suffering. If they don’t have an expert medical witness in their in-house team, they should at least be capable of hiring one.
Malpractice victims are in physical and emotional pain as well as financial distress. As such, they need all the attention they can get.
Experienced attorneys for medical malpractice are often busy. Nevertheless, you must choose one that will be there for you when you need them.
A lawyer that is often unreachable is a red flag. So, during the initial meetings, evaluate how often you can access them. For example, do you have their phone number and, in case of a missed call, how long do they take before they can get back?
Besides, will they personally handle the case or give it to junior associates?
Working with associates is acceptable, but you must make sure that they are handling the case under the direct supervision of the senior counsel. The latter should take the lead while their associates help out.
Even with all the above qualities, getting along with your lawyer malpractice medical expert, is vital. You need a lawyer who can discuss the intricacies of your health condition in-depth, which is only possible if both of you can foster a personal connection.
Connecting and communicating openly with your malpractice attorney during the initial visits is one of the tell-tale signs that you can be a perfect fit. Effective communications allow attorneys to grasp all the crucial information they need to build a strong case.
Reviews present a surefire way to find more detailed information on a prospective lawyer. It will help you assess where they can offer you the help you need.
Luckily, we live in a digital era where you can easily find this information online. Review sites like Yelp, Better Business Bureau (BBB), and Avvo offer customer feedback and scores regarding a firm’s or attorney’s service provision.
However, you need to note that plaintiffs have varying preferences, and every case has its unique dynamics. So, don’t be quick to dismiss a lawyer just because they have one or two questionable reviews amid a ton of other positive ones. Instead, dig a little deeper to learn more about their service delivery or the lack thereof.
Lawyer fees can escalate really fast. So, no matter how successful an attorney has been at similar cases, you also need to consider their hourly rates.
Bearing in mind that many malpractice plaintiffs may be financially unstable, some firms will offer representation on contingency terms. That means they will not pay any upfront fees and will only reimburse the lawyer a percentage of their total compensation after a successful settlement or trial.
Nevertheless, it is essential to consider the percentage amount to be paid.
A reputable malpractice lawyer will help you get the compensatory and punitive damages you deserve. With these seven factors mentioned above, you are one step away from getting representation from a lawyer well-suited for your particular case.
At JustPoint, we can help you find detailed-oriented malpractice lawyers that fight for your rights. Contact us today.