Can you switch lawyers in the middle of a car accident case?

Last updated on: September 5, 2022

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Many car accident victims have never had to hire a lawyer until now. This means that you may not know the difference between a good attorney and a bad one. Fortunately, you can switch lawyers in the middle of a car accident case if your relationship with your current lawyer is not working out. However, there are a lot of factors to consider. Just because you can switch lawyers doesn’t always mean that it is in your best interest.

Can you switch car accident lawyers?

The short answer to this question is yes. If you are not satisfied with the way that your attorney is handling your case, you have the right to schedule a time to speak with another attorney, hire a different attorney, or even drop your attorney altogether and move forward by yourself. The situation with your attorney certainly can devolve to the point that switching attorneys becomes the best choice for you and your family, but this is a decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly.

Getting through a car accident claim can be very stressful and emotions may be running high. This means that there can sometimes be disagreements or emotionally fueled conversations between you and your attorney. Switching attorneys every time you run into a disagreement may not be the best for your claim.

On the other hand, you and your attorney must be able to communicate well. Your attorney should also have the necessary experience and capacity to handle your claim. Having the right representation is important—it could be the difference between receiving nothing for your injures and getting a fair settlement. If it is clear that you and your attorney are no longer able to work together, then not only is it possible for you to switch to another attorney, but it may be in the best interest of your case for you to do so.

Are there any scenarios where you can’t switch lawyers?

Though car accident victims generally have the right to work with the attorney of their choosing, there are some situations in which you may not be able to switch. The main issue that would prevent you from switching would be the timing of the court proceedings. Judges don’t like to delay proceedings, and switching lawyers adds some time to a car accident lawsuit. If you are fairly close to reaching a potential settlement, then there is a chance that the judge would prevent you from changing from your current attorney.

The other reason that you would be unable to switch to a different attorney is if your desired attorney is unable to take the case. For example, if your preferred lawyer has a conflict of interest from previous involvement in the case, then you would not be able to hire them.

Why Do People Switch Lawyers in a Car Accident Case?

The relationship between an accident victim and their attorney is very important and there are any number of reasons why someone might want to change things up. Some of the more common reasons include:

  •     The attorney doesn’t have the necessary experience to handle the case.
  •     The attorney doesn’t have the ability to understand what you’re going through and doesn’t have the ability to totally commit to the case.
  •     The attorney doesn’t have good communication skills and is unable to communicate things in a clear and concise way to you.
  •     The attorney doesn’t have the availability to answer calls or meet in person to discuss important details related to the case.

How do I go about switching lawyers in a car accident case?

Once you have begun to wonder about whether you can switch attorneys, you have also probably begun to wonder about the process for doing so. This is relatively straightforward, but it is important to take your time and make the proper considerations as you go through the steps.

Decide on a New Attorney

The first step in switching lawyers is to decide who you want your new lawyer to be. If you are switching, there is likely a reason. This means that it is critical that you find a lawyer who is an improvement over your old attorney. For example, if you are looking for a new attorney because your old attorney didn’t have the time to handle your case, make sure to ask questions about the availability of any new attorneys that you are considering.

Hire Your New Attorney

After deciding on who you want to represent you, make it official by signing a retainer agreement with your new lawyer. Complete this step before breaking representation with your current lawyer.

Alert Your Current Attorney

Once everything is in place with the attorney who will be taking over your case, let your current attorney know. It will be up to your new attorney to get all of the documents that they need from your old attorney, and they should be able to work out any fee-sharing arrangements between themselves.

At every point in the process, remember that the most important thing is to have an attorney on your side who you feel comfortable working with and who you feel has the capacity to competently handle your claim. Though switching attorneys can feel uncomfortable, it will likely ultimately be worth it if your new attorney is better suited to deal with your unique situation.

Finding the right car accident lawyer

In order to avoid a situation where you feel you need to switch attorneys multiple times, it is important to know what to look for when you’re switching attorneys.

Good Communicators

After your car accident, you will likely be feeling at least a little bit anxious and confused. Most people who are in this situation have never dealt with something like this before, which means that you will be relying on your attorney for information. Thus, it is important that your attorney is a good communicator. Your attorney should be keeping you informed of any major developments in your case as they are happening and making sure that you totally understand everything that is going on.

A good attorney should also be responsive when you reach out. Lawyers are generally busy people and may not answer every call or immediately respond to every e-mail, but it shouldn’t take them weeks to get back to you. When an attorney is a poor communicator, it might be a signal to you that your case is not very important to them and they are not paying very close attention to it. It might also be a sign that your attorney is not very efficient or detail-oriented, and these are certainly traits that you need your attorney to have if you are going to be seeking maximum compensation from an insurance company.


Dealing with a car accident is mentally and emotionally stressful in any person’s life. It is important that your attorney understands this and meets where you are. It is a bad sign if you feel like you simply represent dollar signs in the mind of your attorney. A good attorney will not only fight for maximum compensation for you and your family but will also take some of the burden off your shoulders by keeping you informed of what’s going on at every step of the way. They should be able to put themselves in your position and explain your case clearly and concisely, so you understand where you stand and what your options are.

Need help? Contact Zinda Law Group today

If you need help finding a new car accident attorney, call Zinda Law Group today to speak with our experienced legal team.

Meetings with attorneys are available by appointment only.