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How Do I Choose A Lawyer?

Like any other profession, the quality of legal services varies tremendously from one lawyer to the next. Some lawyers are barely competent others are outstanding leaders of the legal community. These days, clients can use the internet to obtain information about a prospective lawyer. Internet searches can provide information on the attorney's experience and trial results. I provide information about my actual results on this website so prospective clients can make the best decisions when hiring a lawyer and feel comfortable that the Dordick Law Firm has proven experience and results.

How can a client evaluate their lawyer?

Most of the time it is very difficult for a client to evaluate their lawyer. Lawyers frequently claim they have “trial experience,” or “millions of dollars in settlements” but these generalized statements are often misleading and inaccurate. A client must ask the lawyer who is actually going to handle case specific questions and obtain answers to the questions. Specifically, a client must ask how many cases just like theirs the attorney has handled. How many jury trials has the attorney had as the lead attorney to verdict? Ask what amounts the jury awarded on each of the cases similar to theirs. Ask the lawyer how many cases he handles at a time and specific questions about the level and experience of his staff.

Should I have to pay the lawyer any money up front?

In personal injury cases, unlike other areas of law, the lawyer should be willing to handle the case entirely on a contingency fee basis, including costs. The lawyer should believe in your case enough to put his time and money into your case and wait for reimbursement until he obtains a successful recovery for you.

How much is my case worth?

No attorney can accurately tell you in the beginning of your case how much it will be worth. Any lawyer who tries to tell you that you have “a million dollar case” is telling you what he thinks you want to hear in order to get your case. You are better off with a lawyer who will be honest with you. The truth is that the value depends on many variables that cannot be determined in the early stages of your case. The factors that affect the value of your case depends on the nature, extent and severity of the injuries and damages. Like how long will it take for you to recover? Are you left with permanent residual limitations? How much time and money have you lost from work? What effect has the injury had on your life? The attorney should discuss the different variables that effect your case but should not tell you the value of your case.

Can I change my current attorney to the Dordick Law Firm?

Yes. A client has an absolute right to change lawyers at any time. However, you should not arbitrarily switch lawyers just because it appears to you if your case is moving too slowly or simply that you have not heard from your lawyer lately. These things do not necessarily mean that the attorney is not working hard for you. You should contact your lawyer if you are not sure about the work he or she is doing. You should ask specific questions and obtain satisfactory answers. Your lawyer should meet with you on request to discuss your case. If you cannot reach your lawyer or do not get satisfactory answers to your questions, you should consider changing lawyers. You also have the right to review your file at any time. You can read your file and ask for copies. If your lawyer will not allow you to review your file, you should consult a new attorney.

How long will my case take?

Generally a case takes, 8 to 12 months to resolve if a lawsuit is not required. These days most serious injury cases require that a lawsuit be filed before it can be resolved. Cases requiring a lawsuit generally will resolve in 12 to 24 months, after the lawsuit has been filed. If your case proceeds to the appellate court after a trial, the appellate process generally take another 6 to 12 months depending on how long it takes for the court reporter to prepare the transcript of the trial proceedings.

Will my case settle or will I have to go to court?

The answer depends on many factors. You should assume that your case will go to trial. You and your lawyer must approach your case from the beginning as if it will go to trial. If the other side sees that you are ready, willing and able to go to trial they are more likely to make a reasonable offer without trial. Ultimately, the decision to settle or go to trial is yours. The attorney cannot decide for you. You must decide to either accept the highest offer that can be obtained or to fight in court to try to obtain a better result. Having an attorney with a proven track record will generally help bring about a favorable settlement. Insurance companies and defense attorneys will check to see how well your attorney has done in the past. A good track record makes them more inclined to settle.

Should I go to see my own doctor or will the lawyer send me to a doctor?

Generally, it is better to see your own doctor who is familiar with your background. However, many family doctors and HMO practitioners will not cooperate with a civil lawsuit. You need to see the best medical providers you can see to help you get better. If you or your family or your close friends know of good medical providers for you, you should see them. If you do not have a medical provider and don't know who to see, lawyers are often knowledgeable about which doctors have good reputation, experience, and who will cooperate with a civil case.

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Dordick Law Corporation is committed to answering your questions about Motorcycle Collisions, Car/Truck Accidents, Wrongful Termination, Dog Bites, Sexual Harassment/Rape, Construction Injuries, Product Defects, Medical Malpractice, Trip/Slip and Fall, Food Poisoning, Negligent Security, Chemical Exposure, Birth Injuries, and Pedestrian Accidents legal issues in California.

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