When you instruct a personal injury solicitor to handle your claim for compensation – whether for an accident at work, industrial illness, or a road traffic accident – you will want to know that the legal firm you instruct is committed to your case and dedicated to helping you receive the fullest possible compensation package.
You will also want to be kept well-informed, have your queries answered in a timely manner, and have a solicitor who really understands your case and possesses the relevant experience to handle your claim.
Vitally, particularly in the post-Jackson Report era, you’ll want to be sure that your solicitor is meeting procedural deadlines as well as providing clear and timely details on costs.
If you are concerned by the manner in which your case is being managed, you have the right to complain to your existing solicitor – using the firm’s appointed Complaints Officer – and, if the service does not improve, you may then wish to instruct another solicitor to take on your case.
Why might you want to change solicitor?
You might wish to change solicitors if any of the following occur:
• Your solicitor is never available and does not communicate regularly with you
• Your phone calls and correspondence are not being returned or answered
• Your solicitor has been changed on a number of occasions by the firm you have instructed – there is no continuity of service
• Your lawyer is not making good progress with the claim
• You are not satisfied with medical reports
• You are being encouraged to accept a low or initial settlement offer
• Your insurer allocated a solicitor and you are dissatisfied with their service
• Your claim is being allowed to drag on without progress
• Your claim is being rushed through without adequate attention to its merits
Perhaps the solicitor you previously instructed has experience of relatively routine, low-value, cases but does not have an understanding of high-value and/or complex personal injury claims you require – cases involving brain or spinal injury, for example, require a particular level of expertise.
In the majority of cases, changing a personal injury lawyer will simply involve sending your old solicitor a form so that they can recover any costs incurred at the conclusion of the case. Furthermore, it is important to remember that Regulation 6 of the Insurance Companies (LEI) Regulations should give you the freedom to choose and change your lawyer at will.