Does Hiring a Personal Injury Attorney Mean That I Have to File a Lawsuit?
Filing a lawsuit can be a long, arduous process. It can sometimes take years before the matter is even heard before a judge. The good news is that hiring a personal injury attorney doesn’t mean you have to file a lawsuit. In fact, filing a lawsuit with a personal injury attorney is often the last resort.
Instead, think of a personal injury attorney as your advocate. They’re your champion, fighting to get you a fair resolution to your personal injury claim so that you are adequately compensated and can devote your full attention and energy toward your recovery efforts. Warren Allen LLP has a team of experienced Portland personal injury attorneys who will fight for your rights, both inside and outside the courtroom.
Here’s an overview of what you can expect when you retain the services of a personal injury attorney:
What Does a Personal Injury Attorney Do?
Personal injury attorneys work on your behalf to secure appropriate compensation following a physical injury to you or a loved one, or following the death of a loved one. Most personal injury attorneys work on a contingency basis, meaning they only take a portion of the final compensation amount awarded as opposed to an upfront fee. Since your attorney doesn’t get paid until a settlement amount is agreed upon or you are awarded damages, it is in your attorney’s best interest to fight for you to get the maximum amount possible.
If there’s a dispute as to who is responsible for the injury, a personal injury attorney will collect the necessary records and documentation to establish who is at fault. Even if the other party admits liability, many insurance companies will attempt to pay the bare minimum possible. Having a skilled personal injury attorney by your side will increase your chances of securing an equitable outcome.
What Happens Once I Hire a Personal Injury Attorney?
The first thing a personal injury attorney will do is collect supporting documentation for your case. If you have photos of the scene where the injury occurred, notes about what happened, eyewitness account information, medical records, or anything else that pertains to your case, you should give them to your attorney.
As you recover from your injury, keep a detailed account of any symptoms you experience as well as all of your medical visits. Write down any treatments you are prescribed or recommendations you receive from a medical provider. The more records and details you can provide your attorney, the better.
Your attorney will then get to work on your case. Typically, that begins with serving notice of your intent to file a personal injury claim with the responsible party. Your personal injury attorney will then begin settlement talks and work to secure a settlement that is fair and acceptable to you.
In some instances, settlement talks may be a fairly lengthy process. On average, negotiating a settlement takes about two years. But the length of time can vary considerably based on a number of factors, such as the extent of your injuries. A personal injury attorney often waits until the scope of your injuries, and the necessary medical treatment, are fully understood so that the most favorable settlement can be reached. Of course, this can increase the duration of your personal injury claim.
You may find it difficult to pay for your medical treatment while your personal injury claim is pending. If, for instance, you’re uninsured or your personal injury protection insurance doesn’t cover all your necessary expenses, your personal injury attorney can advise you on your available options. When you retain us, we are by your side throughout the claim process so that you don’t have to navigate these situations on your own.
What Happens If I’m Unable to Settle?
While most cases settle out of court, occasionally a personal injury attorney will need to take legal action. If we are unable to reach a settlement that is agreeable to you, the next step would be to proceed with filing a lawsuit. Once a complaint is filed with the court, there is typically a pretrial discovery process during which both sides collect information and evidence from the other.
While the case is working its way through the courts, there may still be an opportunity to reach an agreement. Both parties may agree to mediation, for instance. If so, a third party would attempt to work out an equitable arrangement for both sides.
However, if the mediation is unsuccessful, the case would proceed to trial. In the event your case does go to trial, Warren Allen’s experienced team of litigators will devote significant time, energy, and effort to ensure the best possible outcome.
That being said, the vast majority of personal injury cases settle out of court. If you’ve been injured and believe someone else is at fault, you should consult a personal injury attorney regarding your available options.
If you’re looking for a Portland personal injury attorney, Warren Allen may be able to help. We provide top-quality legal services in the Portland and Southwest Washington areas, as well as across both Washington State and Oregon. Give us a call to schedule a consultation, and we will answer your questions to the best of our ability to give you an honest assessment of your case.
Since this can be a difficult situation to navigate alone, the best decision you can make is to partner with an experienced attorney who knows the ins and outs of personal injury legalities. Getting the compensation you deserve can be a long, arduous process but we’ll be by your side the entire way and see your case through to the very end.
Leave it to the expert team at Warren Allen LLP to ensure you get the medical treatments you require, as well as adequate compensation to cover them!