Medical malpractice cases can be tricky. Doctors and hospitals have a great deal of insurance that protects them from these sorts of cases, and they can be quite difficult to prove, unless you have the right attorney for the job. If you’re considering filing a medical malpractice claim, you’re likely looking for someone to represent you legally, and you definitely want someone you know you can trust to handle your case professionally, and to the best of their abilities. So how do you decide which attorney will be right for your medical malpractice case? When you sit down for an initial consultation, which is typically free with most attorneys, here are five questions to ask that will help you determine if the attorney you’re talking to is the right fit for your case:
#1 How long have you been practicing medical malpractice, and how is my case similar to others you’ve handled?
When you file a medical malpractice claim, you want to be sure that you can trust your attorney to represent you and your case well. Because medical malpractice cases are notoriously difficult to prove, it’s in your best interest to choose an attorney who has handled them successfully before. If your attorney has recently won a big medical malpractice case, of course there’s no guarantee that they can win your case, but the odds are definitely more in your favor. What’s more, if you can find an attorney who’s familiar with your type of medical malpractice case, then they’re likely to be more comfortable with the laws and precedent-setting cases that can help you win the compensation you need.
#2 What factors are for my case, and which are against?
It’s important to have a realistic idea of how strong your case is, as well as what factors might work against you. It’s equally important to know you have an honest attorney at your side. You don’t want someone who is only going to tell you what you want to hear, because that won’t help you win your case. By asking this question, you’ll be able to determine which attorneys are legitimately trying to help you bring a solid case to the court, and you’ll leave with a better idea of what to expect from your case.
#3 Who at your law firm will by my contact person?
A good attorney will also be honest about who is handling the bulk of your case. Many big name attorneys have clerks and interns do a large deal of research on certain cases, and others may have the initial consultation with you, and then give your case to another attorney at the firm. While these can all be beneficial—interns have more time to do the research, and another attorney may be better in the field of medical malpractice—it’s good to know these things upfront. You need to know who exactly will be handling your case so you can talk to them in person, and so you know who to call when you have questions.
#4 How much will this cost me?
For many, it’s difficult to be confrontational about money. It’s a sensitive subject that not a lot of people like to talk about directly, but in a medical malpractice case, it’s necessary to do before you commit to hiring an attorney. Ask how much they expect the case to cost you out of pocket, what expenses they imagine your case will incur, from hiring medical expert witnesses to obtaining necessary documents, and how much they estimate you could win in your settlement or trial. You need to have a decent picture of the cost of your medical malpractice case, as they can sometimes take longer to close than you think, and you’ll have to be financially prepared to handle those expenses.
#5 How many cases is your firm currently handling?
Finally, be sure to ask about the caseload of your attorney’s firm at that time. Even if they’re the best medical malpractice attorney in the state, if they have too much work, your case will get pushed to the wayside. You need an attorney who’s willing to devote a great deal of time to your case, or you may not see the results you want and need. If the attorney you’re interviewing already has a great deal of work and cases in progress, it’s a good idea to keep looking.
Finding a medical malpractice attorney can take a bit of work, but if you ask these questions, and are interviewing more than one attorney, you’re sure to find someone you’ll be able to trust with your medical malpractice case. If you have questions about your medical malpractice case, or you’re looking for a medical malpractice attorney in Illinois, be sure to give the Epstein Law Firm a call. We’ve been practicing medical malpractice law for decades, and have helped bring justice to many families who were victims of medical malpractice. To set up your free initial consultation, call our office at 773-522-7000 or contact us online today!