What Does a Personal Injury Lawyer Do?

When you are injured due to someone else’s negligence, you have the right to pursue compensation for the damages you have suffered. This usually involves an insurance claim, but it may require filing a personal injury lawsuit. 

A personal injury lawyer can help you through every stage of your case by protecting your rights, building the strongest case possible, and negotiating on your behalf. Your lawyer will be your advocate with the experience, legal knowledge, and resources needed to go up against the insurance company. 

Initial Consultation

Initial Consultation

A personal injury lawyer’s help begins with your initial case review. During this consultation, the lawyer will listen to your story and ask questions about the circumstances and facts. You will also have the opportunity to ask questions. 

At the end of the consultation, the lawyer will give you an honest, upfront evaluation of your claim. The lawyer may or may not accept your case. If they do, you can decide whether you want to hire the lawyer to represent you. Either way, you should have a good understanding of your legal options. 

Your personal injury lawyer has an ethical obligation to protect your rights and act in your best interests. At every stage of your case, your lawyer will represent you, answer your questions, discuss strategy, and give you legal advice. 

As your advocate, you can count on your lawyer to give you honest advice, legal insight, and guidance. It’s important to follow your lawyer’s advice to protect your claim. 

Handles all Communications and Paperwork

After hiring a lawyer, they will send a letter of representation to other parties involved in your case. This letter informs the insurance company and other parties that the lawyer represents you. It will also state that communications should go through the lawyer. 

By handling communications, your lawyer ensures you do not say anything to the insurance company that can be used against you or damage your case. They will also be able to have back-and-forth discussions and negotiate on your behalf while you focus on recovering. 

A personal injury lawyer and their legal team can also handle the complicated paperwork that goes along with your claim. This includes the settlement demand package, a settlement agreement, and potentially legal filings if you need to file a lawsuit.

Investigates Your Accident

One of the first steps your injury lawyer will take is conducting a thorough investigation into your accident. Most personal injury cases require proving negligence. This means showing the other party failed to act with the level of care a reasonable person would have or violated important safety laws. 

During this investigation, your lawyer will obtain police or accident reports, talk to witnesses, visit the scene of your accident, and take other steps to understand what happened and how. Your lawyer will also identify parties that may be liable for your injuries. 

Gather and Analyze Evidence

Throughout the investigation, your injury lawyer will gather and organize evidence to establish liability, prove your injuries, and document your damages. 

There are many types of evidence your lawyer may uncover, such as: 

  • Eyewitness statements
  • Photographs of the scene of your accident
  • Physical evidence such as damage to vehicles in a crash, skid marks, and debris
  • Employment records
  • Medical records
  • Police reports or accident reports
  • Footage from dash cams, CCTVs, traffic cameras, or recordings by witnesses
  • Cell phone records
  • Property maintenance records
  • History of past claims or similar incidents
  • Commercial driver logs

The type of evidence your lawyer will look for depends on the type of accident and circumstances involved. 

Work with Experts

Experienced injury lawyers have a network of experts they may consult with or work with to provide expert testimony. These expert witnesses can be invaluable during settlement negotiations or during a trial. They can help prove causation, that an injury was caused by the accident, that medical treatment was necessary and reasonable, and other important aspects of your case. 

Not all personal injury cases need expert testimony, but they are often required for claims involving medical malpractice, defective products, complex car accidents, and catastrophic injuries

If you suffered permanent injury or disability, your lawyer may consult with a vocational expert, economist, or expert in your field. This is necessary to calculate the value of your reduced or lost future earnings and benefits of employment.

Develops a Strategy

As your case proceeds, your lawyer will use years of legal experience to develop a strategy for your case. 

Among other things, this case strategy will consider:

  • Strength of evidence 
  • Circumstances of your accident 
  • Available insurance coverage
  • The severity of your injuries
  • Maryland personal injury law and relevant statues
  • Value of your case
  • How your case and the defendant would present to a jury

An experienced injury lawyer can plan for likely legal issues and alter the strategy as the case develops. While the goal is always reaching a fair settlement out of court, your lawyer will likely plan for the case to go before a jury, even though it’s unlikely.

Prepare a Settlement Demand

Once you have reached maximum medical improvement (MMI) and the extent of your damages is known, your lawyer will prepare a settlement demand package. This demand letter is the official beginning of negotiations and includes a demand for compensation, case facts, supporting documentation, and a legal argument. 

Negotiate with the Insurance Company

An important role your personal injury lawyer plays in your claim is negotiator against insurance adjusters. Your lawyer will advocate for you and seek the maximum compensation possible. This negotiation process may take weeks, months, or even years, depending on the value of your case and the strength of your evidence. 

Represent You in Court

Some cases cannot be concluded fairly through negotiation. If a fair settlement can’t be reached, your lawyer will recommend the next step: filing a personal injury lawsuit. 

Your lawyer will represent you through every stage of litigation, including: 

  • Discovery phase
  • Depositions
  • Pre-trial motions
  • Presenting your case to a jury
  • Appealing your case if a satisfactory judgment isn’t reached

Your injury lawyer will prepare you for every step, guide you through what to expect, and present a compelling argument based on case law and evidence. Your case may still settle even before it reaches a jury. The defendant may decide to settle if the evidence uncovered during discovery makes them feel they will be unsuccessful at trial.

Consult an Experienced Baltimore Personal Injury Lawyer 

Insurance companies and corporations have experienced legal teams and claims adjustors ready to fight your claim, shift blame, and minimize the severity of your injuries. You deserve your own legal representation to put you on equal footing. If you have been hurt in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing, a Baltimore personal injury lawyer can help. Contact our attorneys at WGK Personal Injury Lawyers today for a free initial consultation to review your case and how we can help you. You can call us at (410) 888-0270.