In most circumstances, you can switch personal injury lawyers. You usually have the option of hiring an injury attorney to represent you. In addition, you have the opportunity to swap lawyers if you change your mind about who you want to represent you. Your freedom to change lawyers is subject to some restrictions. However, you can normally change lawyers at any point during your lawsuit.
Why do people change lawyers in a personal injury case?
People change lawyers in personal injury cases for a variety of reasons. However, the majority of people have the impression that something is wrong with their representation. The following are some of the reasons why people switch lawyers:
- The lawyer does not answer the phone or respond to emails.
- It appears that your issue will not be resolved any time soon.
- You want to take one path in the case, but your lawyer insists on taking another.
- The lawyer’s strategy seems incomprehensible.
- They don’t appear to have any sort of plan.
- You want to know how the legal process works, but your lawyer doesn’t seem interested in explaining it to you.
- Your lawyer puts pressure on you to accept a deal that you don’t want. As a result, you don’t trust your lawyer.
- You have an uneasy sensation that your lawyer isn’t doing their job.
- Your lawyer’s death or disbarment.
How do I switch attorneys in a personal injury case,?
To change personal injury lawyers, you must go through a procedure. Where you are in the case determines what you should do. First, you’ll need to make a substitution of counsel if you’ve already filed your court case. A replacement of counsel is a formal notice to the court and other parties in the case that you are changing attorneys. It’s easier to change lawyers if you haven’t filed a formal legal claim yet. Your new lawyer may be the one to inform your previous lawyer that you’ve decided to change lawyers. Furthermore, your lawyer can notify the insurance company and other parties that you have a new lawyer.
A downside to switching lawyers in the middle of a case is that you might owe two different legal fees
One major problem with switching lawyers in the middle of a personal injury case is that your current lawyer has likely spent time and advanced expenses on your case. This means that your current lawyer will have a “lien” against any judgment that you eventually win. Simply stated, the lawyer you fire may be able to get a chunk of your settlement obtained by the new lawyer. Some lawyers are willing to waive their lien if it’s not that much, or they just want off the case and are willing to give up a fee to get out. In other instances, the new lawyer may be willing to reduce his or her fee by the amount of the lien to make the total attorney’s fee paid the same. But if neither of these options is possible, it might be difficult to switch lawyers without significantly reducing your bottom line settlement, since you will essentially be paying two lawyer fees instead of just one. If you are considering switching lawyers then one of the first questions to ask your current lawyer is what his or her lien on the file will be if you make the switch.
STEPS TO TAKE WHEN CHANGING ATTORNEYS IN THE MIDDLE OF A CASE
Nothing precludes people who are involved in personal injury litigation from switching lawyers. It’s a very straightforward procedure.
Step 1: You should have another attorney lined up to take over your case before firing your current attorney. This will prevent your case from being postponed or possibly dismissed due to missed deadlines while you were looking for new counsel.
Step 2: With your new attorney, sign a retainer agreement. This is essential paperwork that authorizes your new lawyer to represent you in court.
Step 3: Your new attorney will then produce a “Consent to Change Attorney” form for you. This form serves as notice to the court, your current attorney, and all other parties involved that you have changed attorneys.
Step 4: Your new lawyer will also draft a “stop work” letter for you to deliver to your old lawyer. This instructs that attorney to withdraws from your case and deliver the file to your new attorney.
You should strongly consider switching attorneys if you believe you have the improper attorney for you and your case or if you are dissatisfied with your existing attorney.
Is it true that you can’t switch lawyers in the middle of a case for any reason?
Changing attorneys in the middle of a case has some drawbacks. If changing lawyers cause the case to be delayed, the court may refuse to allow you to do so. The restriction is in place to ensure that people do not swap counsel solely to postpone their cases. If you’re considering changing lawyers, it’s critical to find a new lawyer as soon as possible. The sooner you transfer counsel, the less likely it is that the court will reject the move due to time constraints.
You won’t be able to switch lawyers if the one you want to deal with has a conflict of interest in the case. Perhaps the lawyer is also representing one of the parties in a different capacity. The lawyer and the judge in charge of the case are at odds. In most cases, your freedom to pick your counsel is unrestricted; nevertheless, you may not be able to have the attorney of your choice due to conflicts of interest. Before taking your case, an attorney can check to see whether they have a conflict of interest.
Are you in need of a personal injury attorney in Concord, New Hampshire? Contact us to learn more about how we can help you.