Finding, Interviewing And Selecting The Right Medical Malpractice Lawyer; A Step By Step

Finding, Interviewing And Selecting The Right Medical Malpractice Lawyer; A Step By Step

Doctors and other healthcare providers are humans too and sometimes, they make mistakes. That said, there’s still a huge gap between common human error and outright negligence and inability to practice the profession.

If you’ve been injured due to a medical professional’s irresponsibility, then you’ll be researching medical malpractice lawyers and are probably wondering who the right one is for you. Follow this step by step on how to find, interview and select the right medical malpractice lawyer for you.

A. Finding Malpractice Lawyers

You’ll need someone who inspires your confidence and who you’ll be most comfortable with. Look for a good track record and excellent communication skills.

Finding

1. Recommendations From Family, Friends And Professional Acquaintances

A family member, friend or even a friend of a friend may have pursued a medical malpractice case in the past. Ask for the name of their attorney and how they found the experience to be. Moreover, lawyers from different specialties are usually in the know on who the best are in other fields. Ask your estate or divorce layer, etc., if he or she can refer you to a good malpractice attorney.

2. Using Websites Like Lawyers.Com

There’s a lot of them littering the vast world of the web. Let’s discuss the most popular, and arguably, the most useful. At lawyers.com, you’ll be able to look for attorneys, as well as their clients’ reviews and rating.

There’s also nolo.com and findlaw.com, both useful websites too but neither can provide ratings like lawyers.com does. Lawyer directories and ton of information can still be found. One suggestion is to try looking for local lawyers who live near you. It’ll be a good way to save money of you have to make a lot of visits throughout the progress of your case.

3. Google It, Use Any Search Engine Or Check The Phone Directory

This especially applies to those who live outside North America. Lawyers.com, nolo.com and findlaw.com are only operative for the USA and Canada. Type the name of your city and country + ‘medical malpractice lawyers’. Example: “São Goncalo, Brasil + medical malpractice lawyers” or “Liège, Belgique + medical malpractice lawyers”. Note that São Goncalo uses Portuguese and Liège is a French-speaking city so dialect must be taken in consideration too.

Don’t forget to check the phone lines. Spend a good amount of time checking websites and gathering as much info as you can.

4. Contact Your Country’s Or State’s Local Bar Association

Again, use the phone and get in touch with the local bar association, especially in more remote countries where enough information are not always found online. If you luck out, there might be a free service on lawyer referral. Some countries even have public lawyers you can enlist for free or for a small fee. Be warned, however, that the service you’ll be getting with public lawyers probably wouldn’t be as good as with private ones.

5. Visit The Bar’s Website

Once you’ve gathered your list of potential names, look them up on the state or country bar association website, if there’s one. It is the governing body that regulates lawyers’ services and behavior. The bar association may have formally reprimanded one or two of your choices in the past. You can still choose them, of course, just be extra cautious. Or maybe you like a rebel, depends.

B. Interviewing Medical Malpractice Lawyers

Once you’ve found your potential counselors, it’s time to interview them. Do this with an initial phone call. Sometimes, lawyers also give free consultation. It’s a great opportunity to gauge whether you’re the right match for each other.

1. Be Prepared

Take note of the basic facts about your malpractice case jot them down beforehand. This will come handy on the first interview. You’ll have to tell the lawyer standard but important facts like the type of damage and injury you suffered, the date when it happened, the name of the health care provider to be accused and the name of the hospital or healthcare establishment where the malpractise took place.

2. Make The Appointment

Call the office and inquire about the lawyer and when you can do an interview. Either you agree to an initial phone interview or they ask you to visit their office.

3. Interview Questions

Prepare a list of questions to ask by order of importance. It will be good to leave some space after each question to make room for recording the lawyer’s response. Bring this with you or have it ready beside your phone. You’ll want to ask the following questions, include them in your list:

Experience and qualification. Inquire on the percentage of medical malpractice cases that the lawyer has handled. How long has he or she been representing clients with similar cases? What’s the success rate? Does he or she handle your type of injury? Are you talking to the lawyer who’ll handle the case? How long do cases normally take?

The firm. Inquire on the percentage of malpractice lawsuits that the firm has handled. Does it have competent staff qualified to handle complex medical record?

Rate. Ask if they’ll take the case on a contingent-fee basis, meaning, they won’t charge for services rendered unless the case is one. Lawyers sometimes bill per hour but with malpractise cases, be leery if the he or she chooses this option. It can be construed that they do not hold much faith in the case. Inquire about the firm’s malpractice insurance if there’s one.

C. Selecting The Right Lawyer

Make a checklist of the qualities you’re looking for. Include the following:

  • Good feedback and high ratings
  • Excellent credentials
  • A healthy track record
  • Willing to take the case on a contingent-fee basis
  • Sound firm resources

D. Schedule An Appointment Base On Your Checklist.

At the end of the day, when all’s been said and done, the one you choose is the counselor who meets your ideals, gives you the best proposals and has a good track record for your type of case. After your talk, you’ll get a feel on how you get along with said lawyer. The one who makes you the most comfortable, who can explain everything clearly and who gives you the most confidence in your case is the lawyer for you.

 

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