Choosing the legal team
Selection of the legal team is extremely important. The process of making a legal claim is difficult and it can be made more so if the lawyers are not suited to either the client or the type of claim.
Serious personal injury claims are a specialist area of claim management and the legal team needs to have significant experience in this type of work to ensure that the claim is managed efficiently and effectively to a successful outcome.
The relationship with the solicitor is important in this type of claim. Good communication is the lawyer's duty to his client. A good lawyer will ensure there are no misunderstandings; that the injured person and their family have every opportunity to deal with the issues that they feel are important and that doctors and other health professionals take time to listen.
Here are four 'essentials' when choosing your legal team:
- Select an individual solicitor as opposed to a firm.
- Make sure that person can conduct the claim from start to finish.
- Meet the solicitor in person before instructing them.
- Ensure you feel comfortable with the person.
Injured people and their families have the right to ask detailed questions about the solicitor and barristers before instructing them. Appropriate questions might include:
- Are you a member of any specialist organisation related to the conduct of brain injury or spinal cord injury litigation?
- Have you been approved or accredited by any specialist organisation related to the conduct of brain or spinal cord injury?
- Have you received any training or education related to the conduct of brain or spinal cord injury litigation? If so what?
- Have you ever conducted this type of claim before? If so, please describe each case, including the nature of the injury, the stage proceedings reached, and the value of the claim.
- Do you have any system whereby the quality and efficiency of your work is audited by an independent body?
- Do you expect to be in charge of, and familiar with, my case throughout its duration?