What happens after you’ve retained your lawyer?
The investigation happens.
The investigation is critical. To achieve the best result, it requires you and your lawyer to work as a team. It’s often important to get at it quickly.
Get the basic information to your lawyer promptly. Make sure it’s accurate and complete. As you come across new information, get that to your lawyer too. He or she will appreciate your continuing help.
If your case involves an accident, the basic information will include the date of the accident, the day and time of day, individuals involved, location, and vehicles involved.
Was law enforcement involved? Were photographs taken? What was said at the scene of the accident? How did those involved leave the scene – in their vehicles, by ambulance, with law enforcement?
What injuries did you sustain? What health care providers have you seen, and for what purpose? What medical bills have you incurred, from whom? What insurance coverage do you
have – health, vehicle, uninsured and/or underinsured, umbrella. Were you on the job so workmen’s compensation becomes a consideration? Have you reported the accident to your
Your medical records will be obtained and organized by your lawyer after you’ve signed the appropriate release. Your list of health care providers must be complete – try your very best to not leave anyone off the list. It’s important to be complete.
It’s absolutely essential to be completely open and honest with your lawyer about your health care history. If you’ve had prior medical issues, tell your lawyer about them especially those that are in any way similar to what you’re experiencing after your accident.
It’s often devastating when a client is not completely honest about their history. It’s painful and harmful to your case if troubling part of your history is brought out for the first time by the other side during cross-examination.
No matter the issue, be honest and complete with your lawyer. Tell your lawyer whatever there is to tell – tell it all – so the appropriate disclosures can be made and issues can be thoughtfully addressed early on in accordance with the law.
Work with your lawyer so you know what he expects of you, and what you can expect of him. If you have questions, don’t be shy – ask away. If you have concerns, don’t be shy.
The process of investigating your case is important. You, and your lawyer, need to know all of the facts – the good, the bad, and the ugly – so an informed decision can be made about whether and how to proceed. As you work together, you and your lawyer will get to know each other better and develop a trusting relationship that will serve you both well going forward.
Will you need an expert? We’ll talk about that next.