Worker compensation, as you already know, is a complex legal matter. The best guidance to understand and choose the right lawyer for you can be found online. Articles pertaining to case studies and accessing the state industrial commission’s website would be a great start. Also, internet can help you find the workers compensation lawyers in your area like www.johnfoxassociates.com in the form of a directory or other listings that may include reviews and rating for each of them.
You can also find a good worker’s compensation lawyer through friends and networks in addition to using local or state bar associations specific to the compensation law. You can also use your existing legal counsel who probably practices in a different branch of law for suggestions or help.
Once you have shortlisted two of three workers compensation lawyers, you will need to set up a consultation sessions with each of them. Normally, lawyers offer such consultations free and these sessions will help the lawyer understand your case in addition to your studying and deciding if you want to hire him/ her. Remember, if the consultation cannot be scheduled immediately, the lawyer is short on time and may not be able to assist you quickly or he/ she may lack required resources.
During such consultation sessions, you need to keep the following in mind to decide about hiring the lawyer in consideration:
a. Before you attend the consultation, it is wise to have background information about the lawyer in addition to some biographical information. You can get these from the lawyer’s website or from the state bar association.
b. Try to understand the lawyer’s experience in handling workers compensation cases and his tenure in handling such cases. You can ask him/ her about this information.
c. Workers compensation lawyers usually work for employees [claimants] or employers and not for both. So, find out if the lawyer or the firm represents employees or employers. This can be easily found out with a phone call to the lawyer’s office.
d. Understand the lawyer’s command of the law, and how it applies in your case as judged by the lawyer. It is important to judge if the lawyer is a good listener and tries to understand your stand.
e. Judge, if the lawyer is able to instill confidence in you towards resolving your workers compensation claim.
f. Check the office staff; this will keep you in good stead if you choose to hire the lawyer.
g. Ask for references [other lawyers and clients] and a draft of the retainer agreement. Follow up the references through phone calls later. The information you get should reinforce your confidence in the lawyer you choose.
h. Inquire about the fee, you will not be facing a large retainer since the state laws fix the fee and the lawyer fee will be a certain percentage of the claim. Take into account the cost of reports and other extra costs that can figure in the claim. Ask for an approximation of these costs.
i. Ensure that you are comfortable and confident about the workers compensation lawyer you choose before hiring him/ her. Your case could be long-drawn, so decide accordingly.
Keep the above pointers in mind and choose the right workers compensation lawyer to win your rightful claim.