Over $150 Million Recovered For Our Clients “Roger K. Gelb is one of the area’s most respected and sought-after legal minds” – Washingtonian Magazine
Bethesda Personal Injury Lawyer
Our Bethesda personal injury lawyers have practiced tort law in Maryland since 1954. Our Bethesda personal injury lawyers have successfully represented clients near Bethesda Row, the Strathmore, Pike & Rose, and across Montgomery County, ensuring familiarity with local court procedures and legislation. With years of experience representing clients in the Montgomery County Circuit Court and familiarity with Bethesda landmarks, our lawyers bring a localized approach to each case. Beyond long careers practicing in Montgomery County, our Founding Partner, Joseph Gelb, and Managing Partner, Roger Gelb, hail from Bethesda, Maryland. Thus, our firm has an extra sense of familiarity when handling cases in the region.
Our dedicated Bethesda injury attorneys understand the complexities of Maryland’s legal system, offering unparalleled guidance through every step of your claim. Seeking compensation claims in Bethesda involves not only legal battles but also a journey toward injury recovery support, where our team offers comprehensive guidance and compassionate legal advice for accident victims.
How Much Does a Bethesda Personal Injury Lawyer Cost?
Typically, the cost for a skilled Bethesda personal injury attorney, whether for car accidents, medical malpractice, or workplace injuries, aligns with standard rates nationwide across the personal injury law sector. Personal injury law is unique in how the fee structure is set up. The large majority of personal injury lawyers work on a contingent basis. At the commencement of representation, we have our client sign a standard retainer agreement. This agreement allows the law firm to be paid out of the recovery. If we settle your case before filing suit, we take one-third of the gross recovery. However, if we have to file suit on your case, our fee will increase to 40%. This fee structure provides a plethora of benefits to clients.
If a potential client cannot afford legal representation, they can afford the contingent fee structure. The reason is that we only charge a fee if there is a recovery. This form of risk-sharing benefits the client.
Additionally, there is no upfront cost the way there is with most lawyers when you sign a retainer. Even if you can afford a large retainer, it is always preferable to hang onto the cash.
An attorney is sometimes incentivized to go to court and waste time dragging out your case. When the lawyer is being paid hourly, that should not be surprising. However, a Bethesda personal injury lawyer, working on a contingent basis, is incentivized to maximize your compensation and resolve your case promptly, benefitting everyone.
You can ask as many questions as possible without worrying about tacking your bill. Personal injury lawyers do not charge by the hour. So, you can ask five or 100 questions; it won’t affect our fee.
Timeline of a Typical Personal Injury Case in Bethesda
For many seeking justice after a car accident, workplace injury, or due to medical negligence, navigating the timeline of a personal injury lawsuit in Bethesda can seem daunting. Here, we break down the many steps that go into your case. Of course, we will continue to update you as you move along in real-time. However, this will help clear up any confusion you may have first.
Of course, your injury marks the commencement of your personal injury journey. Hopefully, you will recover quickly and be back to total health from here. In the meantime, you would like to seek a reputable Bethesda personal injury lawyer to help you obtain fair and full compensation.
Personal injuries can range from car accident injuries and slip and fall accidents to more complex cases involving medical malpractice or defective products, all caused by another’s negligence. In a car accident, for example, neck and back injuries are common due to the whiplash that takes place. We also see clients get concussions from the sudden jolt that throws their head forward into the steering wheel. With nasty accidents, injuries can be far worse.
We offer free initial consultations for potential clients looking into claims for car accidents, medical negligence, workplace injuries, or other personal injury concerns in Bethesda. Because of the nature of personal injury cases, attorneys do not accept every case. Unlike in a criminal defense case, for example, the attorney will generally defend the client whether he is guilty or not. However, as detailed above, Bethesda personal injury attorneys operate on a contingent basis. Thus, it must also be worth the lawyer’s time to work on the case.
Of course, our lawyers will always take the time to explain to you whether your case has merit. Sometimes, your case does have merit, but it is not worthwhile for you to hire an attorney. We will explain everything to you in these situations, too. An example might be where the insurance policy is low, and your injuries are severe. In these cases, your damages can reach hundreds of thousands of dollars. But when there is very little money available to recover, the insurance company may have already made you a complete offer, even without the threat of litigation. These instances are relatively rare, but they are worth mentioning. If we take your case and you sign your retainer agreement, we can move to the next phase.
Once we begin representation, your focus becomes getting healthy again. You may have suffered significant injuries. Healing from these injuries can take time, often months. Often, the timeline of medical treatment consists first of a hospital visit on the day of the accident. Then, many of our clients begin regular visits to a chiropractor or physical therapist and physician’s office. The primary physician will then be able to refer you for additional treatment as needed.
Medical treatment can take months, and it can be costly. In many cases, medical treatment can cost tens of thousands of dollars. Fortunately, medical treatment is a compensable damage. If you have $25,000 in medical expenses, the liable defendant owes you $25,000, plus whatever other damages you incur. Not every damage is compensatory damage. But medical expenses are entitled to total compensation so long as they are related to the injury you are suing for and are proportional to your injuries.
After completing your medical treatment, our Bethesda personal injury lawyers meticulously evaluate your case, including accidents, medical expenses, and lost wages, to craft a comprehensive demand letter. But before we do this, we must request all the bills and records from your medical providers. Also, we need to prove any lost wage claims. First, there can be several hundreds of pages regarding your medical records. While much of it is repetitive and without much legal significance, parts tell your Bethesda personal injury lawyers the extent of your injuries. These providers may also act as witnesses in court, so knowing their interpretation of your injuries is vital. Once we have a grasp of your injuries, as told by the doctors, we will need to prove your lost wage claim.
To do so, you must have a disability slip from your doctor. In this slip, the doctor must entirely excuse you from work for various dates. Then, your employer must confirm that you missed this time and our job title and hourly wage. We provide clients with forms, so you must fill out the basic information and get your employer to affirm its accuracy. Then, we evaluate your pain and suffering and any other damages that may be applicable. Next, we create a demand letter and send it to the tortfeasor’s insurer. Most insurers require four to six weeks to evaluate our claim and begin settlement negotiations.
File Suit, if Necessary, with Bethesda Injury Lawyer
Two general instances are causing us to file suit on your case. The first is if the defense denies liability. If that is the case, we must prove liability in court. This is not a problem, and we do it all the time. Insurers only deny liability if they believe they are right. This is unlike a disagreement on the monetary value of your case, where it may be a negotiating tactic. For a dispute on liability, it may be because their insured is telling them a different story than yours, and they choose to believe him or her. Sometimes, they are telling the truth, but often, their insured is an unreliable witness, and we win in court on liability.
We just alluded to the second reason, which is a dispute regarding the value of your case. There is a multitude of factors that go into evaluating the value of your case. Naturally, some biases will set in, making agreement on a precise value difficult. However, both parties are incentivized to resolve your case outside of court. This is due primarily to the time and monetary expenses involved with litigation. Again, this applies to both sides.
We must collect your payment once we have agreed to resolve your settlement or judgment in a court case, whether b. This is reasonably easy when the money comes from an insurance company. They require that you sign a release of liability, and in turn, they send us a check. Our legal and ethical obligation is to deposit that check into our Attorney Trust Account. Then, we disburse the gross recovery to all recipients. Recipients primarily include medical providers who treated you to whom you still have outstanding balances and any lien holders. We also disburse money to you and our firm, paying our legal fee.
If dealing with an uninsured party, we may need help collecting our judgment. If it is a settlement, it is simple. We will sign a release of liability once we know the money is secure. However, if it is a judgment, there are pesky ways for defendants to avoid paying a judgment. Bankruptcy is the most common option in these cases.
How do I Know if I Have a Case?
Whether you have a case depends on the cause of action you want to allege. In personal injury cases, the most common is negligence. Negligence is the cause of action in most car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, bus accidents, and slip and falls. In nightclub injury cases, the cause of action may be negligence, but it can also be battery. For the cause of action you allege, you must prove each element by a preponderance of the evidence. If you can do so for negligence, for example, the defendant is negligent per se. However, more is needed for it to be worth pursuing.
You may be familiar with cases where a plaintiff sues a restaurant for some act of negligence and then recovers $1 in damages. Given that personal injury lawyers work on contingent fee structures, any seasoned personal injury lawyer should be able to evaluate your case and reject it because it is not worth anyone’s time. Of course, our Bethesda personal injury lawyers are always happy to sit down with you and explain why your case does or does not have merit and whether it is worth pursuing.
Who is The Best Personal Injury Lawyer in Bethesda?
When hiring a Bethesda personal injury lawyer, you want a law firm that will do the best job possible on your case. How do we define the “best” in a personal injury context? Of course, it is impossible to do. Furthermore, to claim to be the best would be unethical and a risk for sanctions by the Bar Association. However, we can suggest a list of attributes to look for when hiring legal counsel for your injury. The three attributes we recommend seeking out are experience, empathy, and reputation. While neither is sufficient for excellent legal representation or the “best,” you will likely find someone who will handle your case competently.
Handling a range of personal injury claims, including auto accidents in Bethesda, our team is equipped to handle the unique challenges these cases present. The same goes for motorcycle accidents, truck accidents, and slip and fall cases. Slip and fall accidents in Maryland require a knowledgeable approach, and our Bethesda personal injury lawyers are adept at navigating these often complex cases.
Why it matters: Experience in a personal injury law context provides attorneys and the firm with a better understanding of the legal process, knowledge of legal precedents, negotiation skills, familiarity with insurance companies, and an ability to evaluate your case.
Gelb & Gelb: Our law firm was founded in 1954, giving our Bethesda personal injury lawyers 70 years of experience practicing tort law in the area.
Why it matters: Empathy is vital in a personal injury law context because it allows for effective communication between client and attorney, a better ability to understand the impact of injuries and thus to argue pain and suffering damages, management of emotional stress for the client, and tailoring legal strategies to the client’s needs.
Gelb & Gelb: Empathy is in our client communication from our Bethesda personal injury lawyers to our staff. We do this because we know how difficult your life can be following a personal injury. The frustration accompanying such a situation is compounded when it is not your fault, such as in individual injury cases.
Why it matters: When hiring a personal injury law firm in Bethesda, Maryland, you want one with an excellent reputation. Reputation is crucial because it allows you to better trust the attorney you are working with, so you can step away from the legal side and focus on getting your life back on track. Moreover, reputation attracts better talent. The better the reputation of a law firm, the easier it is to attract more skilled workers. It is also important from an ethical perspective. Being able to trust your attorney ethically is just as important. If you know he has a reputation for outstanding legal work but a bad reputation for ethics, his legal skills could be more meaningful.
Gelb & Gelb: At Gelb & Gelb, we have over 100 five-star reviews on Google. Furthermore, we have a reputation in our communities in Washington, D.C., and Maryland as ethical, trustworthy, and effective attorneys. We have been voted as a top law firm in D.C. multiple times by countless publications, an honor we are proud of.
Contact a Bethesda Personal Injury Lawyer
If you’re seeking the best legal representation for a personal injury claim in Bethesda, from car accidents to medical malpractice, our seasoned attorneys are ready to help. Contact us today for a comprehensive evaluation of your case.
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