Frequently Asked Questions
If you are like most of my clients, you may not have much experience dealing with the justice system. I may even be your first attorney. Here are a few common questions clarified below.
How much does a personal injury lawyer cost?
Nothing up-front! I get paid when you get paid. You will never reach into your pocket to pay me any money. Never! In fact, I pay for all litigation expenses. For instance, just to file a lawsuit in our local court can cost up to $450. I will pay that and all costs of your lawsuit. You never have to finance anything. I’ve got you completely covered.
How much is my case worth?
Not until I meet you and obtain your medical records can I fairly evaluate your injuries and get an idea of how much your case is worth. As a general rule, the more badly injured you are the more valuable your case is. Someone with a broken spine has a more valuable case than some who sprained their pinky finger. Any attorney who tells you up front what your case is worth is likely being dishonest.
How long will my personal injury lawsuit take?
The average case takes 4 to 6 months to resolve, but can take much longer. Often, I’m able to resolve your case without actually filing a lawsuit. But if a lawsuit is necessary, expect the suit to take a minimum of 6 months. Although I always try to move my client’s case along quickly, the court process moves slowly. As with most things, patience is a virtue when dealing with a personal injury lawsuit.
When should I call a personal injury lawyer?
Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer any time that you suffer injury by the negligence of someone else. Do not try to negotiate a personal injury directly with an insurance company by yourself. You’ll put yourself at a huge disadvantage by attempting to deal directly with an insurance company. Do you really think that huge insurance companies made their billions by caring about injured people and paying fair settlements in a timely manner? The reality is that it’s you against the Beast, the gargantuan Insurance Company. Only a skilled personal injury lawyer can get you what you deserve.
Why am I not being compensated when I have full insurance coverage?
This is a tricky question. I often hear clients tell me that they have “full coverage”, but I don’t think most of my clients know what “full coverage” means. Your insurance can help, depending on what type of coverage you have. But for the most part, you’ll be seeking to get the other guy’s insurance carrier to pay you money. What kind of coverage the other guy has is a much more relevant question. I will determine how much insurance coverage is available to you so as to maximize your recovery and make sure the insurance companies treat you fairly.
Can any lawyer handle my injury case?
NEVER, EVER hire an attorney that doesn’t handle personal injury cases as a routine part of his or her practice. Dealing with insurance companies is VERY difficult. It takes years of experience in the world of personal injury law before an attorney is really capable of getting injured people the compensation they deserve.
How should I find the right lawyer for me? Should I call the lawyer on TV?
Don’t be fooled by fancy television commercials, a picture on the back of a phone book, or a telephone number that rhymes. When a lawyer spends tens of thousands of dollars every month in advertising, then that lawyer is really a professional advertiser. There are only so many hours in the day. Any lawyer who dedicates most of his daily hours on a marketing scheme isn’t paying attention to your case. You’ll be pawned off to an “office manager” or a “paralegal”. Why would you hire a lawyer who spends their days in front of a camera, making television commercials? I’M A LAWYER, WORKING FOR YOU!
Can I call the insurance company directly and save the lawyer’s fees?
NO. Insurance companies are gargantuan behemoths worth billions of dollars. They’ve made their billions by not paying fair settlements. Do you know anything about how the insurance industry operates or how personal injury cases are prosecuted? Of course you don’t, and the INSURANCE COMPANIES KNOW THAT. Any Insurance Company will be thrilled to talk to you instead of an attorney. Let me give you an example of what I mean.
I once had a client who tried to settle her case by herself. She’s a smart, educated woman. She suffered a serious back injury and thought that she could get the insurance company to settle directly with her. The insurance company gave her a “final” offer of about $2,500. Fed up with the “fair” dealing of the insurance company, she called me. I settled her case for six figures. If you’re injured, contact me.
Do I have to see a doctor?
If you’re injured you’ll need to see a doctor. I can help you find a variety of specialists who will give you the care you need. Walking the maze of the medical profession can be daunting. Let me help you walk that maze. Don’t have medical insurance? Don’t worry, I can often direct you to a medical professional even when you don’t have health insurance!
Yucca Valley Office:
56244 Papago Trail, Suite 7, Yucca Valley, CA 92284
Attorney Jim Cicalese - Indio Office
45-841 Oasis Street Unit #6
Indio, CA 92203
Yucca Valley Office
Attorney Jim Cicalese - Yucca Valley Office
56244 Papago Trail, Suite 7
Yucca Valley, CA 92284