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Key questions to ask before you hire a personal injury lawyer

In Portland, just like everywhere else, and whether you like it or not, there are dozens and scores of ways that you can become and the unwitting victim and sustain an injury through the fault of someone else.  A car crash, a bike accident, a trip and fall on a sidewalk, a dog bite, a defective product that cuts or burns you……the unfortunate possibilities are endless.

When you sustain an injury due to someone else’s actions, you may be able to sue for damages related to pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages, and other expenses related to the incident.  Finding the right lawyer to handle your case is crucial because even the smallest misstep could end up costing you dearly down the road.  With so many excellent Portland-based attorneys to choose from the task may be a little daunting at first, so here are some questions you might want to ask as you start your search.

Do you have experience in handling my exact kind of case?  If so, how much experience?  The key here is to try and find someone who’s experience matches your case.  If you’ve been in a bike accident, then find an attorney who is well versed in bike accident law.

What is your level of familiarity with the local court system?  If an attorney knows the venue where your case will be heard, this can give you an added advantage, especially when it comes to understanding a judge’s preferences.

What is your fee structure?  Are there any additional hidden costs?  Most lawyers will take on injury cases on a contingency basis, meaning they will take a percentage of your settlement.  However, there may be costs to hire investigators or expert witnesses that may need to be paid out of pocket.

What is your attitude toward negotiating a settlement?  The fact is, most cases are settled long before they go to trial.  So it is imperative that your attorney is a skilled negotiator who can earn you a maximum settlement at the right stage of a case.

Describe your level of communications?  You want an attorney and his staff to answer all your questions in a timely manner to avoid raising your fear levels.  They should also give you information in plain English.

Dawson Law Group serves Portland and surrounding Oregon communities.