Lawyers, rightly or wrongly, often have a reputation for being somewhat less than straightforward and honorable. However, by taking the time to learn about selecting and working together with a lawyer, you will come to see that not all lawyers are created equal. Continue reading to learn ways to make your relationship with the legal profession a healthy and useful one.
Ask for a free consultation. Many lawyers will offer a free consultation, so you can have your questions answered. During the consultation, you can also see if you are comfortable with that lawyer. Always go to more than one free consultation so you have a good mix of lawyers to choose from.
Make sure that you have a decent interaction with any attorney before you invest any money. You may have to spend a good amount of time with your lawyer, so it is important that you choose one that you don’t have any issues working with. Take the time to sit down with any potential attorneys and see if you get a good feel for them.
Look for reviews on local lawyers online. Finding a lawyer that you can trust and respect can be very difficult, so any advice that you can get can be very helpful. Make sure the reviews you consider are on an independent site and take all comments with a grain of salt. The goal is to find the general consensus.
Finding a good lawyer is a lot of work. You should put some time aside to do some research and give yourself a few weeks to compare different options. Meet different lawyers to get quotes and ask for advice. You should not expect to find a quality lawyer right away.
Speak with people you trust before trying to find a lawyer on your own. Speaking with them may give you a heads up on the best available lawyer. Referrals are a good way to find a lawyer but keep in mind that your friends’ advice might not be a good idea if they have not dealt with similar issues.
Wait to sign a contract with an attorney until you feel the situation is right. Request an estimate from the attorney so that you know approximately how many hours he or she intends on putting into the case. If the lawyer refuses, move on. A range is acceptable, but it is not fair if you have no idea what you are getting into.
Discuss clearly with the lawyer what his or her role will be in your case. You want to make sure that they will file all the paperwork that is necessary and explain things to you every step of the way. Keep a journal and note all your interactions with the lawyer in it. This might come in handy if you and the lawyer later disagree on what was said or done in your case.
Use online services to browse through listings of local lawyers and even look at reviews written by clients. You should do some background research on the different lawyers you see listed online and meet with them to discuss your issue before hiring them.
Set up a good communication system with your lawyer first thing. Lawyers are busy people, and your case may be one of many. If you haven’t established an expectation for communication, then you may be forgotten. So set it up during the first meeting. Make sure your expectation is clear.
It is often the case that lawyers are seen as a necessary evil, only to be consulted when things really go badly. The truth, though, is that if you educate yourself about what lawyers do and how they can help make your life easier, you are likely to see things differently. Hopefully the information above has been a useful resource to help you do just that.