Whether you are going through a divorce, starting a business, got hurt in an accident, writing a will, or facing a lawsuit, you will require lawyer services. As a business or individual, it’s up to you to make the right choice since a lawyer can be a huge asset or expensive line item. Unfortunately, hiring a lawyer can seem like an intimidating process, especially if this is your first time doing so.
When you know what to look for, there is a much greater chance of attaining positive results, and this goes for the lawyer. Read on to find out tips that will help you pick the right lawyer for you and your circumstances.
The initial consultation is offered free of charge by many lawyers, and you can use the first interview to assess the honesty and forthcoming nature of a lawyer. By instinct, most people can determine an individual’s character in a matter of minutes; however, there are a couple of personality traits to watch out for.
For instance, maintaining eye contact is a sign that the lawyer is likely being honest with you. During the interview, find out how optimistic the lawyer is in regards to your case. Make sure that you feel secure around the lawyer and find out if they have a good reputation for handling cases such as yours.
During the initial conversation, it will be easy for you to assess whether the lawyer is detail-oriented and responsive to your requirements. Find out if you have the option of calling them throughout the lifetime of your case to discuss any rising issues or concerns. If he or she is against this idea, you will probably have trouble communicating with them once the case starts.
Other things you should find out include regularity of updates on the case status, and whether these updates will be communicated in writing or verbally over the phone. You should also find out the main point of contact with the lawyer, will communications be done via a paralegal?
Locating the best lawyer means finding one with services that are within your price range or budget. With this in mind, find out the costs during the initial consultation meeting. After all, it’s horrifying finding out that you are getting charged per hearing, letter or other means that would encourage the lawyer to keep on dragging the case.
In addition, get the estimate of how much it would cost you in writing and secure a contract with the maximum costs associated with the case to prevent nasty surprises. The ‘fair’ price usually depends on the individual case. For instance, a liquor liability expert will not charge the same as a residential real estate lawyer.
It’s critical that you get a lawyer you can trust but equally important is finding one with extensive knowledge and experience in the area you require services. For instance, if you live in San Rafael CA, you should hire a divorce lawyer in that area for drafting divorce papers, and a trial lawyer in case of a criminal case. While general law practitioners are great for dealing with non-complex matters, their lack of specific knowledge in some field may do more harm than good to your case.
The Bottom Line
It is important that you keep in mind that this is not a ‘till death do you part’ relationship. One day, you may have to change your lawyer and end up breaking up with him or her. However, don’t feel bad about your decision to change representation, lawyers also understand that relationships with their lawyers do not last forever.
For more tips on all things related to family, check out the other blogs on Cyber Parent.