Before you start interviewing attorneys, or if you have already been turned down, you need to know why personal injury attorneys have to turn down some cases. There are many reasons, but here are some of the most common:
YOU WEREN’T SERIOUSLY INJURED – THERE ARE NO DAMAGES
Maybe a doctor made a huge mistake that could have caused you serious harm, but it didn’t or you were in a car wreck but did not suffer an injury.
You want to do something about it, hold them responsible. And make them pay. You are right to feel that way, but you cannot sue for damages that do not and will not exist. Just like you can’t sue someone for a near-miss that could have turned out to be a major car crash, but wasn’t, even if the driver should be taken off the road for their dangerous habits.
YOU CAN’T PROVE LIABILITY FOR YOUR INJURIES
The opposite of the problem above. You were seriously hurt, it has cost you dearly and will cost you dearly for the rest of your life. But you can’t prove that someone else caused your injuries or you can’t prove who specifically. You can’t seek compensation for your injuries from the world at large, no matter how badly you need the money. You have to name a defendant and prove that they should be the ones to pay.
There are certain circumstances, such as hit and run, where you can turn to your own insurance to pay if you have the right kind of coverage. An experienced injury lawyer like those at the Wood Law Firm LLP will explore that option, but it may turn out that it is not available in your case.
THERE IS NO AVENUE OF COMPENSATION
So, you have the first two nailed. You have massive damages and there is no question about who was responsible. Your case is a slam-dunk. You’re the winner, hands-down. But the defendant doesn’t have the money or insurance to pay, even if they are ordered to.
Again, there are certain types of cases where you can get a settlement from your own insurance company, such as uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. Or, you may be able to hold a third party responsible for your injuries. In either situation, you’ll need a highly-skilled attorney and those options simply may not apply to your case.
If there is no avenue of compensation, an attorney can’t afford to take your case. When a lawyer represents you on a contingency fee basis, they invest both their time and their money into your case. They have to choose cases that will allow them to recoup that investment or they won’t be in the business of practicing law for very long.
YOU WAITED TOO LONG TO TAKE LEGAL ACTION
This one really hurts. Your case is good in every other way. You need and deserve the money. But, you’re not allowed to go after it because you waited too long and the statute of limitations has expired, or another similar deadline has passed. The attorney wants to help you, would take your case in a heartbeat, but there is no longer a case. It is barred by law.