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Why a Personal Injury Lawyer in San Francisco Might Not Take Your Case

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Chuck Geerhart
Why a Personal Injury Lawyer Might Not Take Your Case

Are you having trouble finding an attorney and wondering how to get a lawyer to take your case?

Or maybe you’re wondering, Do I have a personal injury case at all?

The truth is, no attorney accepts every case that comes through their door. And not every client has a viable personal injury case.

It depends on your specific situation, but there are some things you can do to improve your chances of getting an attorney to take on your case.

Reasons an Attorney May Not Take A Case

There are many reasons why lawyers might turn down a personal injury case. Lawyers have to consider a number of factors when reviewing a potential client’s situation.

They may simply just be too busy with their current caseload. The easiest thing you can do is ask the attorneys you’ve spoken to why they will not take your case. But here are some common reasons.

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It’s Too Late to Sue

The statute of limitations is the amount of time someone has to begin a personal injury case. In California, the statute of limitations is two years from the time of the incident.

If that time runs out, you will be barred from bringing your case to court.  

The Injuries Involved

The most important factor in determining how much a case is worth is the seriousness of the injuries.

Litigation is expensive and time-consuming. If the injuries are too minor, initiating a personal injury claim won’t be worth your time because the costs will outweigh the benefits.

The Defendant’s Resources

Generally in personal injury matters, the defendant’s insurance company covers the damages according to their policy.

However, sometimes the policies are not enough to cover the settlement. An attorney may deny a personal injury case if the defendant cannot pay a judgment.

Client’s Unrealistic Expectations

An attorney will work with their clients to come up with a reasonable amount to claim for damages—accounting for the client’s actual costs, like lost wages and medical bills, and intangible losses, like loss of enjoyment of life, pain and suffering, or loss of consortium.

They will work hard to get their clients the compensation they deserve. However, some people are misinformed about the amount of compensation they could get.

When clients have unrealistic expectations about the value of their case, it could be very difficult for an attorney to achieve a satisfactory outcome.

The Case Is Too Hard to Win

Personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, meaning they only get paid for the work they do if their clients win.

An attorney may refuse a personal injury matter that seems like it will be more work than reward or if there is not a great chance of winning.

How to Get a Lawyer to Take Your Case

If you’re thinking that no lawyer will take my case, there are some things you can do to improve your chances.

Gather All Available Documentation

You should try to present as complete a picture as possible of your situation. You can show the extent of your injuries with medical records and a doctor’s diagnosis.

Police reports are essential in car accident cases. You should also record evidence like witness contact information and a timeline of events.

Have Reasonable Expectations

Your attorney will help you determine what you can expect for compensation based on your situation. Your attorney wants you to make as much money as possible—they make a percentage of your damages.

However, expecting an extreme amount of compensation for your damages will make it too difficult for your attorney to successfully negotiate your case. 

Be Honest with Your Attorney

Your attorney has probably heard it all. Lying jeopardizes your credibility, not only for your attorney but for the judge and jury as well. Your attorney is not going to risk their reputation or their own credibility if they cannot trust you.

Let the Attorney Do Their Job

Some clients try to control the way their attorneys conduct their cases. They expect daily status reports, or they try to dictate actions the attorney takes in their matter. Your attorney is the legal professional, and you hired them to handle your case. So let them.

What to Do When Your Lawyer Drops Your Case

Although it is not common for lawyers to drop a case once they begin representing a client, it does happen.

There are many reasons why a lawyer might drop their client’s case, such as because the lawyer was not competent enough, the client violated their fee agreement, the lawyer has a conflict of interest, or the client was acting unethically.

You should try to talk to your attorney about their reasons for dropping the case. It may be difficult to find another lawyer if your lawyer says you were acting fraudulently or unethically.

However, if your lawyer dropped your case through no fault of your own, you should hire another personal injury attorney.

Contact the Law Office of Chuck Geerhart

The Law Office of Chuck Geerhart can help you whether you are seeking legal advice for the first time, you’ve already discussed your claim with other attorneys, or you had an attorney and they dropped your case.

We will listen to your story and discuss whether we are the right fit for your claim.

We get great results for our clients because we are careful to take on a limited number of cases at a time to ensure we give every client the personal attention they deserve.

Contact us today to schedule a consultation.

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