When to Change Your Personal Injury Lawyer & How to Do It? | Kisling, Nestico & Redick
Kisling, Nestico & Redick, LLC Hurt in a Car? Call KNR.
Lacking trust in your personal injury lawyer can increase your stress when you deserve relief.
Written by
KNR Legal
Date posted
December 15, 2023

Dealing with the pain, uncertainty, and inconvenience of a severe injury like after a car accident or truck crash can be incredibly frustrating. You probably know that you need capable legal representation to ensure you get the compensation you need, whether from an insurance settlement or court verdict, but what if the first lawyer you choose falls short?

Here, the experienced and compassionate Ohio injury lawyers at KNR delve into the subtle and not-so-subtle signals that suggest your current personal injury lawyer might not be the right fit for your case. We understand that the decision to change lawyers should not be taken lightly. Still, it could be the difference maker in getting you the best possible outcome and maximum compensation for your losses.

From recognizing red flags like lack of communication and poor case management to understanding the logistical and ethical considerations of switching attorneys, we cover it all.

5 Signs You Need a New Personal Injury Lawyer

It’s natural to have doubts if you’re embroiled in a personal injury claim, especially if it’s getting contentious or the insurance company is lowballing you. But if you suspect your lawyer may hurt your chances of resolving things favorably, you’ll likely start thinking about switching attorneys.

If that’s the case, here are some signs that may indicate you and your lawyer are not on the same page:

1. There’s a Lack of Communication

Effective communication is the cornerstone of a successful attorney-client relationship. If your lawyer is not promptly responding to your calls, emails, or failing to keep you updated, it raises serious concerns about their commitment and reliability. This lack of communication can leave you feeling out of the loop and anxious about the progress of your case.

2. Your Lawyer Pressures You

Your lawyer should act in your best interest, offering guidance without pressuring you into decisions. If you feel coerced into accepting a settlement offer or taking a course of action that doesn’t align with your wishes or best interests, it could be a sign that your lawyer is more focused on a quick resolution than the most beneficial outcome.

  3. They Lack Professionalism

Professionalism and experience are non-negotiable in handling personal injury cases. Disorganization, missed deadlines, or a lack of knowledge about the specifics of your case can severely impact the outcome. An inexperienced or unprofessional lawyer might overlook critical aspects of your case, leading to subpar representation.

4. Neglect or Indifference

Your case is a significant event in your life, and you deserve a lawyer who treats it with the attention and seriousness it warrants. Feeling neglected or sensing that your lawyer is indifferent to your case can be distressing. A good lawyer should make you feel supported and confident, not neglected.

5. Your Case is Stalled

Progress in a personal injury case might be slow, but there should be a sense of forward movement. If your claim is at a standstill with no reasonable explanation, it might be time to question whether your lawyer is actively working on your behalf. Stagnation can be due to various factors, including lack of effort, insufficient resources, or inadequate legal knowledge.

How to Switch Personal Injury Lawyers in Ohio

If you feel overwhelmed by your personal injury case or unheard by your lawyer, you’re probably not getting the service and support you need. Remember, you can always switch lawyers in Ohio anytime.

Like your doctor or dentist, you deserve the best care from an attorney. You shouldn’t settle for less when receiving any kind of professional help.

But Before Switching Lawyers…

While it’s entirely your right, keep in mind that firing your attorney in the middle of a case or insurance claim can get complicated. So before you make a final determination and give your current lawyer their walking papers, here are a few essential steps to follow:

  • Be Upfront About Your Concerns – Discuss your issues directly with your current representation. A transparent conversation could be all they need to adjust their behavior or strategy.
  • Do Your Research– Before firing the attorney you have, find the representation you want. This will help ensure a smooth transition and prevent you from going without legal advice. Research lawyers near you and ask around for recommendations. Seek out a law firm with high ratings, positive reviews, and a history of success handling similar cases.
  • Get a Free Consult– Many law firms offer free initial consultations. Schedule one with an Ohio personal injury attorney you’re interested in. You can ask specific questions and tell them more about your case without any commitments or costs.

What to Look for in Your New Personal Injury Lawyer

As you seek out new legal help, consider the traits you want in your new attorney. Hopefully, knowing what didn’t work in the past will solidify your needs and expectations moving forward.

Here are a few good things to look for in your next lawyer:

  • They have experience and success with similar cases
  • They respond to your messages quickly and thoughtfully
  • They have clear, knowledgeable responses to your questions
  • They seem to care about you as an individual, focusing on your recovery
  • They consider your input and value your trust
  • They inform you more about their process and strategies for getting maximum compensation
  • They have high ratings, and their reviews are largely positive
  • You feel a weight lifted off of you after talking with them

The Steps to Change Lawyers in Ohio

If you are ready to switch lawyers and have already found new representation, the process should be straightforward:

First, formally notify your current lawyer of your decision to terminate their services. This notification should be in writing, clearly stating that you no longer require their legal representation. This can be a little awkward, but it’s a crucial step to ensure no misunderstandings about ending your current legal agreement.

Once you’ve informed your current lawyer, your new lawyer will facilitate the transfer of your case files. They will request your former attorney for all relevant documents and information about your case. This step is a common practice in the legal profession and vital for maintaining the continuity and integrity of your case.

Lastly, address any outstanding fees with your previous lawyer. These fees are typically for the services rendered up to the point of termination. Your new lawyer can guide you on handling this, often integrating it into the broader financial arrangements of your case.

Following these steps ensures a smooth transition to your new attorney, keeping your personal injury case on track.

Frequently Asked Questions about Switching Lawyers

Are There Times When You Can’t Change Lawyers?

There are typically no exceptions for when (or why) you can change legal representation in Ohio. However, it may be challenging to find another lawyer if you are too close to your trial date or the statute of limitations is almost up.

Is Switching Lawyers Worth It?

You might think it’s too much effort or time to change lawyers, especially if you’re far into your case. Ultimately, your needs and recovery come first. Whether you wish to change lawyers is up to you.

Catching your new personal injury attorney up to speed might take time, pushing your case back further. However, changing representation could be the difference between disappointment and success. Exploring your options and scheduling a free consultation with a trusted, accomplished law firm couldn’t hurt.

Do I Still Have to Pay the Attorney I Fired?

It depends. If your lawyer worked on your case for some time, they’re likely entitled to an amount of your settlement. Review their contract to see if there’s information on the termination process and your obligations.

What Happens to My Case Files?

Your former lawyer must submit the case’s evidence and documentation to your new attorney. You can finally relax knowing your case is in good hands, and your information should be kept private throughout the process.

Talk to KNR About Your Case

At Kisling, Nestico, & Redick LLC, we understand how frustrating a bad legal fit can be. Let our experienced and successful team of Ohio injury layers help determine if you’d benefit from a change in counsel. If necessary, we will seamlessly help you make the change and aggressively seek the maximum amount possible. We have personal injury law offices in Akron, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, and throughout the state of Ohio

Call KNR at 1-800-HURT-NOW or use our online contact form to schedule a free, no-risk, or obligation case evaluation.