Scenario: You have been in an accident. You are injured and need medical care. You're going to be missing work for a time, and you still have bills to pay. This has never happened to you before, and you're not sure what to do next. What do you do?
As you talk to your friends, watch TV or surf the internet, you see ads for accident attorneys that say things like "free initial consultation" or "no recovery, no fee" or something like that. You probably think---wait, attorneys are expensive. Can this really be free? It seems too good, or too easy, to be true.
So, first question, is it true?
Answer: Oftentimes, the simple answer is the easiest answer and the best answer. And in this circumstance, the answer is almost always "YES”, the initial consultation is free.
Next question: How can attorneys do that?
Answer: When you go to a store to buy something, do you have to pay an admission fee? When you go into a restaurant to get something to eat, do you have to pay a charge before walking in the door? Of course, the answer is no. Personal injury lawyers work much the same way.
You see, when you make an appointment with a personal injury attorney, the personal injury lawyer is both buying and selling. First, the lawyer must "buy” into your case.
He must believe the facts you are telling him and must believe that with those facts, you have a claim that is worth pursuing. At the same time, if the attorney believes it is a claim worth pursuing, he has to "sell" himself, that is, instill the confidence in you to help you believe that he is the best attorney for your case.
The great majority of people who have been involved in an accident do not have the means to pay an “admission fee” to speak with an attorney. Likewise, they do not have the financial means to pay an attorney's regular charges, win, lose or draw. In the United States, the laws allow attorneys to handle cases by contingency fee. What that means, is that the attorney only gets paid (generally a percentage of the case) if he is able to obtain a recovery in the case for his client. In this sense, the advertising slogan really is true: No recovery, no fee.Question: But how can attorneys do that?
Answer: This is where experience counts.
Would you want a dentist performing open-heart surgery on you? Of course not. In addition, you shouldn't want a divorce or other type of attorney to handle your personal injury case.
Experienced personal injury attorneys can offer free consultations, and handle cases on a no recovery, no fee basis, because their education, background and experience helps them understand that much better when a person has a valid case and when a person does not. If the attorney does not believe the case to be valid, the attorney simply turns it down. If the attorney believes the case is valid and decides to accept the case, it still does not guarantee a recovery, but it puts you in the best position to get to a recovery.Question: Is it easy after that for an experienced attorney?
Answer: Not even close.
As an experienced personal injury attorney, having been in the profession for 21 years, I can tell you it is anything but easy. Once the decision is made to accept the case, I understand that my staff and I will be putting in hundreds if not thousands of hours, in addition to advancing costs ($$), in order to investigate the claim properly to obtain the best recovery for our client.
It is our responsibility to put the case in the best position to obtain the best recovery for our clients. However, remember, just as hard as my staff and I are fighting to get the best result for a client, there is likely an attorney on the other side who is fighting equally hard to get the best result for his client or insurance company. Both sides think in the end they are going to win.
Again, this is where experience counts. Know the law, know the facts, know your client’s case and understand, through experience, how a judge or a jury will likely interpret the facts should the case get that far. That only comes with experience.
In choosing the right attorney, look only for an experienced personal injury attorney, and one who has been declared to be a "Certified Specialist in Personal Injury and Wrongful Death" by State Bar of Arizona. These attorneys have the knowledge and experience to handle your case better than anyone, and most often, don't charge any more than the other guys. If the price is the same, why would you choose anything but the best?
Because of their track record of success, these attorneys don't need to charge an "admission fee" to allow you to speak to them. With their experience, a careful screening of the information you provide them or their staff allows them to make a further determination as to whether they want to meet with you. If they make the decision to meet with you to further discuss your case, then this "initial consultation" is always "free". There are no hidden costs, or strings Attached. Thereafter, if they decide to take your case, if they tell you that there is “no fee until a recovery” for you, you can believe that as well.
Look for an experienced personal injury attorney. Look for a Certified Specialist in Personal Injury and Wrongful Death. The State Bar of Arizona has determined these attorneys to be the most experienced, the most honest and the most ethical of the attorneys practicing in their field.
Free initial consultation? 100% accurate. No recovery, no fee? Absolutely.