Is it possible to change my personal injury Attorney in Miami?
You can hire or fire a personal injury lawyer at any time. If you hire an attorney to take your case and you sign a contingency fee agreement, they may not even have a claim for any fees. However, most personal injury lawyers will include a provision to the agreement, which allows for “quantum meruit”, which is a claim for fees based on how much work they performed for you before you fired them.
In some cases, this provision cannot be enforced. It depends on if you, the client, fire the attorney for good cause or not. This helps to protect good attorneys from being fired by clients for no good reason. However, if you are uncomfortable with your current lawyer, they stop answering your calls or they are not working your case properly, you should not feel like you must keep them.
When you fire a personal injury lawyer, your case may take longer because the current attorney must obtain an order from the judge relieving him or her as counsel and the new attorney will have to get up to speed on the case before it moves forward. If you don’t already have another attorney hired, the judge may grant you a reasonable amount of time to obtain new counsel.
It may be beneficial to request a meeting with your current attorney before firing them. It could be an issue that can be resolved and it’s time consuming to switch lawyers in the middle of a case. It could simply be a lack of communication and maybe your current attorney has not properly explained to you how each part of the process will work and how long it will take.
If your attorney is part of a large law firm, the firm may be able to assign a second chair or an entirely different attorney to represent you. This is often the case if you simply don’t feel comfortable with your attorney or you don’t feel they are doing their job. It’s always good to consult with the actual attorney and bring your concerns to their attention first.
Be careful taking advice from friends, family or any other attorney you may have discussed the case with. In many circumstances, you are not supposed to discuss the details of the case with anybody else because it could harm your case, especially if it’s done through social media channels or another way that the opposing side can gain written proof of.
If you do decide that you must let your current attorney go and hire a new one, always do it in writing. By putting it in writing, you eliminate any doubt and you create a supporting document for your decision. This letter should also provide instructions about where to forward the files. By treating this task professionally, you avoid the risk of your current attorney responding in a negative fashion. If you are profession when firing them, they will often be professional in the matter, as well.