Have you decided you want to file a personal injury lawsuit to get compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and more?
If so, you need to choose your law firm with care, and it’s not always the biggest personal injury law firm that is going to be right for you. Here’s why.
The Name on the Firm Isn’t Going to Be the Name of Your Personal Injury Lawyer
Most likely, you’re choosing the large personal injury law firm because of the reputation of one of its named partners. However, that person is likely NOT going to be the one handling your case. Instead, you are likely to get a more junior lawyer. If you’re lucky, the senior partner may be involved in some of the strategy meetings, but it’s possible the senior partner won’t show up except at trial and maybe negotiations, if they show up at all. Your case may even be handled by paralegals and legal secretaries most of the time.
You May Not Get the Level of Attention Your Case Deserves
Because most large law firms are always working on a series of personal injury cases at all stages of the process, their pipeline, cases are always moving in all directions at the same time. People are often just too busy to dedicate personal attention to every case. The firm may quickly “pigeonhole” your case and treat it the same as they treat other cases they think are similar, even if they’re not.
This is especially true if your personal injury case is not considered to be a big winner. Everything in a large law firm runs on dollars and cents, and if they don’t feel your case will bring in a lot of money, they’ll look to quickly pass it through to try to make their money with less effort.
It May Cost You More
Working with a large personal injury law firm can be more expensive. We’re not just talking about the lawyers’ fees, which you’re told about up-front, and which can be higher in a large firm. We’re also talking about expenses. Large law firms are often used to working with a big budget for their cases, and they may readily employ experts, technologies, and other tools on your case that are more expensive—but may not bring better results.
These expenses can eat up your compensation, especially if you end up with a smaller verdict or settlement than expected, which can always happen.
For most types of personal injury, it’s best to work with a small firm, where you know the lawyer will be handling your case with personal attention and is used to keeping expenses under control. An ethical lawyer will also tell you when he doesn’t have the resources to handle your case, and will refer you to the larger firm if necessary.