Check the records in your county courthouse. Many states keep the records of settled, medical malpractice and dental malpractice cases, either in the county or federal courthouse. In some states and localities, these records may be accessed on-line. The listings have information about each case, including the names of the lawyers and whether the case was won or lost. If you can do this, it is a good way to find out the names of winning lawyers. You can contact the clerk’s office at your county courthouse and ask how and where you can see the files of old, medical malpractice or dental malpractice cases.
What if the lawyer has a take-it-or-leave-it attitude? What should you do if you interview a lawyer and he seems to resent your questions or acts as if he is doing you a favor to take your case? Most lawyers are skilled and hard bargainers and may strike a tough pose or act as if they are doing you a favor just to get you to sign up with them on their terms.
When you are talking to a lawyer, always bear in mind that there is an oversupply of lawyers and most of them are eager for business. If you have a good case, he stands to make a lot of money – as much as 40% of your award – and really wants your business. If you do not sign the lawyer’s retainer and tell him you will think it over, chances are that you will get a phone call in a few days, asking you to stop by his office for another chat or offering you a better deal.
No matter how much the lawyer tries to impress you with his importance, or how indifferent he may act, he is not doing you any favor to take your case. You are doing him a favor to give him the chance to earn a large fee. Choose your lawyer with care and set your own terms, the same as you would with any other employee. Above all, do not let anyone hustle you into signing anything until you are satisfied that you have the best lawyer available.
The Rule Is: No matter which method you use to locate a lawyer, you should ask a lot of questions and satisfy yourself that he or she is the lawyer, who will give you the best chance of winning your case.
Since 1978, JD.MD, Inc. has proudly served the U.S. and Canadian legal communities in helping determine if a malpractice case has merit. Malpractice lawyers can contact us at jdmd.com or by calling toll-free 1-800-225-5363.