If you look around, you’re bound to come across a lawyer or two, right? And, believe it or not, that number is on the lower end of the scale. It begs the question: How do you go about choosing one who’ll be a suitable fit for you?
Picking a Car Crash Attorney
Finding yourself in a car accident is among the worst things that could happen to anyone. You’ll likely want to get out of that fix, and fast. What you should do in such a situation is meet and ask an accident lawyer some questions to determine suitability. This article sheds light on what questions you can ask a lawyer before retaining them.
1. What Is Your Legal Specialty?
While many attorneys are generally equipped to handle your car crash claim, some are specialized in particular legal areas. To win your case, it would be best to select a lawyer that is well-versed in car accident cases.
2. Will You Personally Handle My Case?
It baffles many clients that, after a long period of vetting potential lawyers, they end up being represented by the junior staff. This is not to say that these paralegals and junior attorneys are not qualified, just that it would be better to know what you are getting yourself into from the get-go.
3. Do I Have a Good Chance of Success?
It is the norm for most car accident claims to bear the burden of proof to show the extent of the other party’s negligence. This can be due to their breach of duty of care toward you that resulted in the accident.
Supposing the chances of winning the civil claim are low, it would be advisable to simply accept a settlement from the insurers rather than proceeding to trial. Always ask for the genuine opinion of your lawyer before biting off more than you can chew.
4. What Is Your Fee for My Case?
Many car accident attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, which means they will only receive a payment if you win or settle with the insurers. Attorneys who work on such a basis are typically compensated with a percentage of the total compensation. Suppose you cannot afford an attorney’s retainer. In that case, a contingency fee may be a better option for you.
5. What Fees and Costs Will I Be Responsible For?
If you choose to retain an attorney who agrees to accept your case on contingency, you may still be obligated to pay any associated costs and fees, including attorney fees, that were incurred while your case was being investigated and prepared for filing.
To prepare better, be aware of the specific expenses that you may be liable for.
6. How Long for My Case to Be Resolved?
Suppose you sustained severe injuries resulting from your automobile accident. In that case, you might be alarmed to discover that your hospital expenses are piling up. You may find yourself in an even more precarious financial situation if you cannot go back to work due to your accident. It is critical to inquire about how long the attorney anticipates it to take to settle your case.
7. What Can I Do to Ensure Success?
Many injury victims mistakenly believe that their only task is to sit back and wait for reimbursement after they employ an attorney. The truth is, however, that your lawyer will want you to take the initiative and see more doctors, meet with investigators, and stay completely involved in the case until it is resolved.
Make a list of questions you’d like addressed with your personal injury lawyer. You want to get an attorney who can answer all of your questions and make you feel at ease. At the end of the day, you should be confident that you chose the best specialist for the job.
The Perfect Investment: RAD Diversified and Income-Producing Farms
Amidst the global lockdown of 2020, Dutch Mendenhall, founder of RADD America, began looking for an alternative to standard residential real-estate investments. So, he turned his analysis to farms and was blown away by the immense potential he saw. After going public in late 2019, RADD America purchased US farmland and made slices of the real estate available at minimum investments of $10,000.
Income-producing farms vs. other real estate asset classes
According to Mendenhall, an apartment complex in today’s US real estate market commands approximately a 4% or 5% cap rate. Farms offer somewhere around a 15% to 20% cap rate.
“When I first began looking at investing in farms, I compared each acre to an apartment or housing unit,” Mendenhall recalls. “The variety that income-producing farms provide is what I really love about them as an opportunity. With one season producing wheat and corn the next, you can double tap — you can raise livestock on top of agriculture. Putting money into the farm only pays off in time. Everything from improving soil to increasing irrigation makes a major impact on potential income, and so much of America’s farmland has fallen into disrepair during the last 20 years.”
When Mendenhall began investing during the early days of the pandemic, sustainable acres of producing farmland sold anywhere from $3,500 to $5,000. Today, he finds that income-producing acres of farmland easily sell for $9,500 to $10,000.
“I’ve seen farmland values almost double during the last couple of years,” Mendenhall says. “Currently, we’re in Tennessee, Arkansas, and Idaho, but we are analyzing land all over America. What reports don’t show is the difference between a properly maintained acre of farmland and an acre that is in disarray. There’s only so much workable farmland on the market today. We’ve hit the tipping point, and now, there’s a scarcity of land for people to buy. If you have the opportunity to purchase amazing agricultural land, you have to pull the trigger quickly.”
Income-producing farms as an asset class
Mendenhall is no stranger to investors. Since 2006, he’s connected them to deals in short sales, wholesaling, residential properties, and storage units, though he admits that every asset class has caused the same excitement as farmland. “At this point, we can’t find enough bargains for our investors,” he says. “They take real pride in their investments and keep asking us for more.”
RADD America takes a true grassroots approach when connecting its investors to farmland. “The farming world is different from any other in real estate,” explains Mendenhall. “We start by having our acquisitions and agricultural teams meet with farmers. When we get ready to brand cattle or plant, all the local farmers come and help. In the same spirit, our teams go out and help the local farmers when it’s their turn to brand and plant. To do it right, you have to build a relationship and a connection that’s quite different than other types of investing.”
RADD America is composed of expert investors and expert farmers. The company offers its investments through fractionalized ownership. In other words, the company purchases one farm and then allows a joint pool of investors to own it together.
“If you don’t have a team that knows how to farm and maximize income, you’re not going to get the best possible return for investors,” warns Mendenhall. “Thankfully, our team isn’t so big for this type of investing that we forget who we are, and we have the economy to scale at a great pace.”
The impact of global competition on income-producing farm investments
RADD America closely monitors global trends. In Mendenhall’s experience, investors win when they move before the market. However, when they move after the market, they lose.
“When Russian first invaded and sparked its war with Ukraine, for example, we kept a close eye on its global impact,” he says. “As one of the largest producers of wheat in the world, we knew that Ukraine — now in the midst of a war — wasn’t going to be able to produce wheat at the same scale, so someone else needs to step in and fill the gap. We’re constantly monitoring what’s happening in the world to stay on top of evolving trends.”
In terms of global competition, Mendenhall is frustrated by foreign entities staking ownership of American farmland and agriculture. In this area, China has positioned itself as the number one threat to the sovereignty of the United States.
“When foreign powers have ownership of agricultural land in the US, it puts us all at risk as Americans,” remarks Mendenhall. “Over the past few years, we’ve seen soil quality erode, closures of meatpacking plants, and numerous fires. The likelihood of nuclear war in this age is very small. The quiet war of buying American agriculture and unsettling the American dollar is the threat we face today.”
Clearly, RADD America has a lot to pay attention to at home and abroad. “We’re monitoring weather patterns and making one-year, three-year, and five-year predictions,” Mendenhall explains. “We’re also paying close attention to interest rates to see where this shifting economy is headed. The up-and-down cycles are faster than they’ve ever been. Monitoring the industry is critical. With expert investors and agricultural specialists from RADD America on your team, farmland can be one of your most promising and rewarding investment opportunities.”
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