Questions To Ask a St. Petersburg Workers’ Compensation Attorney Before Hiring Them
Perenich, Caulfield, Avril & Noyes Personal Injury Lawyers | Workers’ Compensation
You can and should hire an attorney to help you pursue a Florida workers’ compensation claim. After all, the workers’ compensation claim process includes many pitfalls for the unwary. You will need an attorney to help you navigate your way through each one of them. Following is a list of questions to ask your prospective workers’ compensation attorney before you hire them.
What Is Your Experience Handling Florida Workers’ Compensation Claims?
Personal injury lawyers often handle workers’ compensation cases, and that’s not normally a problem. It becomes a problem when the lawyer lacks experience handling workers’ compensation cases; workers’ comp cases differ dramatically from personal injury cases. Make sure your attorney enjoys experience handling workers’ compensation cases, preferably in St. Petersburg, Florida.
What Is Your Experience Handling Personal Injury Claims?
One of the disadvantages of workers’ compensation cases is that even if you win, you cannot obtain non-economic damages such as pain and suffering. This limitation can dramatically reduce your total compensation. However, if you can find a third party to sue (meaning not your employer) you can still qualify for non-economic damages.
A slip and fall accident, for example, might have arisen from defective stairwell railings at a worksite. If the worksite owner was not your employer, you might be able to win a personal injury claim through settlement or trial. The opportunity to win non-economic damages is why you might need a lawyer who can identify and prove a personal injury claim for you.
How Do You Charge Your Fees?
Most workers’ compensation lawyers will offer you a contingency fee arrangement. Under a contingency fee arrangement, your lawyer will calculate your fee based on a pre-agreed percentage of the total amount of compensation you receive. if the percentage is 30%, for example, and you win $10,000, your legal fee will be $3,000. If a lawyer loses your case, you will pay nothing.
Find out whether your lawyer will advance case expenses for you. It is best for your lawyer to advance third-party case expenses, such as investigation expenses, so you will owe your lawyer nothing upfront. Finally, if your lawyer tries to charge you on an hourly basis, find another lawyer.
How Will You Communicate With Me?
Your lawyer should communicate with you regularly. Although all major case decisions are yours to make, you cannot make good decisions if you don’t understand what’s going on in your case. Ask your lawyer to tell you exactly how and when they will communicate with you concerning the progress of your case. You should demand periodic written reports. Suspicion is warranted if your lawyer appears reluctant to specify how they will communicate with you.
What Is Your Analysis of My Case So Far?
The main reason for you to schedule a free initial consultation with a workers’ compensation lawyer is to obtain their evaluation of your case. How likely are you to win your claim? If you win, how much money are you likely to win? Too much certainty in your lawyer’s answer is a gigantic red flag you should pay attention to. However, a nuanced answer that your lawyer issues after gathering information about your claim can be of great value.
How Long Do You Think You Will Need To Resolve My Claim?
No lawyer will be able to tell you exactly how long it will take to resolve your claim. After questioning you and gathering evidence about your claim, however, they should be able to give you a ballpark estimate. As always, be suspicious of a lawyer who offers certainty. The best workers’ compensation lawyers will acknowledge the inherent uncertainty of a claim. Don’t be surprised if the lawyer tells you it will take several months to resolve your claim. In some cases, it could take even longer.
Act Quickly and Contact an Attorney Before Your Evidence Grows Stale
Even without concern about the statute of limitations, you must act quickly to pursue your claim. To prevent your claim from growing stale, schedule a free initial consultation with a St. Petersburg workers’ compensation attorney ASAP.
Contact the Pinellas County Workers’ Compensation Lawyers At Perenich, Caulfield, Avril & Noyes Personal Injury Lawyers for Help
For more information, please contact the Clearwater and St. Petersburg workers’ compensation law firm of Perenich, Caulfield, Avril & Noyes Personal Injury Lawyers at the nearest location to schedule a free consultation today.
We serve in Pinellas County and its surrounding areas:
Perenich, Caulfield, Avril & Noyes Personal Injury Lawyers – Clearwater
1875 N Belcher Rd. STE 201,
Clearwater, FL 33765,
Perenich, Caulfield, Avril & Noyes Personal Injury Lawyers – St. Petersburg
2560 1st Ave S,
St. Petersburg, FL 33712,