If you have contacted several personal injury law firms and you have yet to find a lawyer to represent your interests, in most cases it is due to 1 of 3 main reasons. First, they may not believe you claim is worth pursuing. Second, the lawyers may not want to sue the defendant in your case. Third, your claim involves a legal area that very few lawyers like to deal with. Many attorneys do not provide the real reason they will not accept your case. It is important to understand their side of the story. If you do not have several thousand dollars in medical expenses, you can expect an attorney to reject your case.
Some cases just have more problems than they are worth. Cases that personal injury law firms may avoid include ones with damages problems, liability issues and insurance complications. When a lawyer refers to “liability” he or she is talking about the aspect of the case that involves fault. If they believe a jury may find you partially or mostly liable for the accident and your injuries, most attorneys will not agree to take you case unless the damages you have sustained are substantial. In a motor vehicle accident case, if you were cited as the driver responsible for the accident, you can expect that most lawyers will reject your case.
In regards to damages issues, a claim that is clear cut about who caused the accident, but little or no damages resulted, will not peak a lawyer’s interest. This is because personal injury law firms work on a contingency fee basis, meaning they get a percentage of your award and are not otherwise paid for their work; they cannot afford to take a case that does not have significant damages because a legal action can cost them a lot of money to litigate. Bruising and a pulled muscle while uncomfortable or even painful do not result in big settlements or jury awards. There is one main type of insurance issue that will make most attorneys immediately reject your case; the guilty party doesn’t have insurance. While it is certainly true that a plaintiff can still sue an uninsured defendant and attempt to recover compensation from their personal assets, if they don’t have much in the way of assets, a lawyer can actually lose money on your case.
If your lawsuit involves suing a prominent member of your community, such as another lawyer, physician or well-known business man, you might have a problem finding a local attorney to represent your interests. This is particularly true in smaller communities. This is simply the local lawyer’s personal preference and does not reflect on the merits of your case; they may not want to burn any bridges in town. Also, many attorneys have no desire to put a target on their own backs with local law enforcement. In this scenario, look for a lawyer in a neighboring town or elsewhere in your state.
Lawyers may reject your case if it involves an area of law that makes a claim difficult to win or too expensive to litigate. Examples can include a libel and slander case which may just involve hurt feelings more than true damages. The majority of personal injury law firms do not like to take on excessive force, false arrest cases due to the fact they require in-depth knowledge of civil rights law, which most personal injury lawyers are not familiar with. Product liability cases can require lengthy investigation and going up against major corporations; they may simply not be interested. Also some are terrified of going to federal court.
If your case has been rejected by numerous personal injury law firms, ask them for an honest reason why. You may just be barking up the wrong tree, and may still find a lawyer very interested in your case.