If you’ve sustained an injury at work that has kept you from doing your job and putting food on your family’s table, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation payments. However, the red tape involved for filing these claims can be daunting at the very least. Most successful claimants have relied on the expertise of an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer to help them navigate the legal waters of filing a claim. Following are five tips and tricks designed to help you find the best possible workers’ compensation lawyer.
1. Word of mouth is still one of the best ways to find qualified professional services no matter what the field. Asking friends and family for referrals is an excellent way to find a workers’ compensation attorney who will do your case justice. Be sure to ask as many people as possible during your quest for a good lawyer, and listen sharp if you hear the same name on several different occasions.
2. A good workers’ compensation attorney generally provides an initial consultation free of charge in order to ascertain whether you’ve got a case that’s worth pursuing. How the attorney relates to you at this particular time can provide you with a good indication of whether this is the right lawyer for you. For instance, someone who appears distracted or uninterested during your consultation may not give your case their full attention.
3. Experience matters with these types of cases, so be certain to look for a lawyer who’s been practicing workers’ compensation law for at least five years and has a good ratio of successful cases. Experienced workers’ compensation attorneys also keep up with new laws in their states and other factors which might affect the outcome of their cases.
4. Looking online for reviews is another good way to find a competent lawyer, but keep in mind that consumers are much more likely to vent online when something goes wrong rather than to offer praise when the outcome is in their favor. One or two bad reviews need not to be a huge red flag, but any more than that is an indication that you should focus your search elsewhere. You should also check out the attorney’s web page — a polished, positive, and professional online presence is a sign of a competent lawyer.
5. Ask the attorney to provide you with an estimate of what your workers’ compensation case is worth. An experienced, qualified workers’ compensation attorney should have no problem doing this, and even a rough estimate is an indication that the attorney knows workers’ compensation law well.
Of course, your own personal judgment should be the deciding factor. If, for any reason, you and the attorney simply don’t “click,” you’re better off continuing on in your search.