If you or a loved one has been injured and it’s someone else’s fault, what should you do? Well, you should see to their care and comfort, of course. But it’s also a good idea to consult a personal injury attorney.
But it can be stressful to think about approaching an attorney because you don’t know how much it will cost. We at Johnstone & Gabhart think the last thing you should be worrying about at a time like this is payment. We are no-fee attorneys, and let us explain what that is.
“No fee” means there’s no fee upfront, either to talk to us or for us to handle your case. We are paid what is termed a contingency fee only if your case is successfully settled. Our contingency fee comes out of your settlement. If you don’t receive a settlement, you will never owe us anything.
We understand that most folks can’t afford to pay lawyers’ fees upfront, especially when they are dealing with an injury that’s the fault of someone else. You may be facing rising medical costs and may not be able to work due to the injury.
Consulting a West Virginia Personal Injury Attorney: The Process
If you’ve been injured or otherwise harmed in a car accident, truck accident, or as a result of doctor’s errors (medical malpractice) or nursing home abuse, what’s your next step? If the injury was the fault of either another person or an organization such as a nursing home, you should make an initial free appointment with one of our personal injury attorneys.
Our personal injury attorneys will review your situation to determine if you have a legal case. What determines this? The most crucial factor is that another person or organization must have caused your injury.
Say you were in a car accident and another driver ran a red light. They plowed into the side of your car, injuring you. They are responsible for that accident because it wouldn’t have occurred if they hadn’t gone through a red light.
This responsibility is known by a legal term: negligence. It means the person failed to use ordinary care that a reasonably prudent person would have shown. A reasonably prudent driver would have stopped for a red light.
If another person or organization is responsible for your injury, they are liable for your injuries. This means you can bring a suit to be compensated for medical bills, wages lost for work if applicable, and pain and suffering.
During the free consultation, our attorney will learn about your case. You should bring evidence about what caused your injury if you have it. You should also bring evidence about the nature and extent of your injuries.
Forms of evidence can include:
- Police reports on crashes (reporting a crash that causes injuries or death is the law in West Virginia)
- Doctor’s reports about your injuries
- Medical bills
- Evidence of lost wages for time off work, such as paystubs
- Pictures of your injuries
- Eyewitness statements
- Notes on what happened
What Happens Next
If our attorney believes you have a case, the next step is to assert your claim.
If the at-fault party has insurance, such as an at-fault driver in a car accident, we will bring what is termed a third-party claim against their insurance carrier. We will help you do this.
If this isn’t possible or doesn’t result in an acceptable outcome, a personal injury suit can be brought in civil court.
A West Virginia No-Fee Attorney Can Help
Most of these claims require an upfront fee from you. Again, we are a West Virginia no-fee attorney. We will be paid a contingency fee out of any settlement we receive for you. If a settlement is not reached, you won’t owe us anything.
Johnstone & Gabhart has more than 50 years of combined experience representing victims of personal injury cases. We will work together to obtain justice for your injury, including medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Contact our law office today at (304) 343-7100 to set up a free consultation with an experienced West Virginia personal injury attorney.