How to Hire a Virginia Beach Workers' Comp Attorney
If you've been injured in a workplace accident or developed an occupational disease, you'll need to notify your employer and file a workers' compensation claim. You should also consider hiring a Virginia Beach workers' comp lawyer to help make your case and maximize your benefits. If you've never before hired an attorney, this article will guide you through the process.
Identify Virginia Beach Workers' Comp Attorneys
Your first step in the process of hiring an attorney is identifying at least one potential candidate. If you have any co-workers who have been injured and gotten workers' comp benefits, ask if they'd recommend their attorney. You can also ask friends and family members if they've previously used a Virginia Beach workers' compensation attorney.
If you're unable to get a personal suggestion, if you'd rather not discuss your injury with others or if you'd simply like another lawyer to consider, Attorneys.com can help. We offer a service that can connect you with at least one Virginia Beach workers' compensation lawyer in your area.
To begin the process, simply complete the form on this site or call us at 1-877-913-7222. After answering a few basic questions, we'll put you in touch with a Virginia Beach workers' comp lawyer. You can call the lawyer immediately, or he'll be in touch within two business days.
Most lawyers will sit down with potential clients at a get-to-know-you meeting called an initial consultation. This preliminary meeting serves a few functions. It allows you to:
- Ask the lawyer questions to learn more about his experience, background and legal fees
- Tell the lawyer a bit about your Virginia Beach workers' comp case
- Discuss potential strategy and possible outcomes with the attorney
- Decide if you want to hire the attorney
Once you've identified at least one attorney to possibly hire, call to schedule an initial consultation. Most lawyers offer these for free, but confirm that's the case when you make the appointment.
Preparing to Meet With a Virginia Beach Workers' Compensation Attorney
To get the most out of the meeting, you'll want to do some advance preparation.
You should gather copies of any documents pertaining to your injury or occupational disease. These would include medical reports and communication with your employer or its insurance company. If you've had any communication with the Virginia Workers' Compensation Commission, you'll also want to bring copies of that.
You should also take the time to make a list of questions you'd like to ask the workers' comp attorney.
You should focus your questions on topics that help you decide whether the Virginia Beach workers' comp attorney is right for you. Topics to consider discussing include:
- Legal background and experience
- Suggested strategy for handling your case
- What Virginia Beach workers' compensation benefits you could receive
- How your case will be managed
- How much it will cost to hire the lawyer
Bring your written list of questions and some writing materials to the meeting.
During & After the Initial Consultation
As you meet with Virginia Beach workers' comp attorneys, know that anything you tell a lawyer will be kept confidential, even if you end up hiring a different lawyer. That's because all Virginia lawyers are bound by attorney-client privilege rules, which forbid them from revealing information without your permission.
During your meeting, pay attention not only to what the lawyer says, but how he says it. Does the attorney answer your questions patiently? Does he speak in layman's terms? When hiring a lawyer, you want to select someone you trust and in whom you have confidence, so it's important to think about this during your meeting.
You'll probably feel overwhelmed by information during the initial consultation, so try to take notes at the meeting or immediately after. You want to write down what you learned while it's fresh in your mind. These notes will be particularly useful if you end up interviewing several attorneys.
Once you've finished your initial consultations, it's time to select an attorney. Think back to those meetings and compare each lawyer on several levels:
- Experience handling Virginia Beach workers' compensation claims
- Legal fees
- Proposed strategy for handling your injury claim
- Trust and confidence in the attorney
Once you've found a Virginia Beach workers' compensation lawyer who satisfies those criteria, you're ready to hire him and move forward with your claim.