Can I switch workers’ comp lawyers during my case?
The short answer is … Yes, absolutely you can switch lawyers during your case.
Your relationship with your attorney is vital. There needs to be good communication and you need to feel confident in your attorney’s ability to achieve success for you. Success means maximizing your recovery and making you feel comfortable throughout the process. Sometimes you simply need to open lines of communication with your current attorney. Other times that option has already been exhausted.
Your attorney is almost always paid at the end of your comp case. When you switch midstream, your now former workers’ compensation lawyer works out a deal with your new comp lawyer. The fee is generally split in accordance with how much work has or has not been performed. Often, they simply split the fee. Sometimes, specific dollar value deals are worked out instead of percentage deals.
Therefore, sometimes the workers comp attorney does not actually even care about “losing” the case to a new lawyer. If the “fit” isn’t right, the lawyer may feel the same way. Ultimately, it’s your case and your decision. Be comfortable.
There is one major caveat. Switching right before a scheduled hearing is not a good idea. The new lawyer needs time to get up to speed on the case in order to advocate on your behalf.
If you are about to switch, you don’t even need to communicate with your existing lawyer if you don’t want to. The new lawyer can do it for you.
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