There are lots of reasons you may need a lawyer. If dealing with lawyers isn’t something you’ve done, it can be hard to handle. You not only need to feel comfortable with them, you need to understand how an attorney will charge you, and what process to follow for communicating with him or her. Follow the tips presented here to prepare yourself for dealing with attorneys.
Speak with lawyers that you’re thinking of hiring to get their fee list. Not all lawyers cost the same and their fees can differ significantly. You want to be aware of how much you are going to spend upfront. Nothing is worse than when you lose representation while proceedings are underway.
You should know that your lawyer must hold anything you tell him in confidence. For instance, if you share a very personal matter that you do not want others to know, you do not have to worry because a lawyer is legally bound to not share this information with others.
Do not choose a lawyer if you are feeling unsure about them. If you don’t feel comfortable with the fee arrangement, don’t hire the lawyer. When you give them a retainer, don’t just hand over a blank check. Ask for an estimated cost so you know what to expect.
If you need an attorney for a business matter, ask for referrals from people you know in the business field. If possible, contact the people who might be likely to have worked with lawyers before. For instance, if you’re into small business law, talk to an estate broker, banker, accountant, etc. These people talk to lawyers on a frequent basis; therefore, they can provide great recommendations.
Maintain a written record of all lawyer interactions you have. Write down how much you paid, when you talked to each other, and what you talked about. This may assist you with handling issues that may occur later, such as creating larger bills or fees that are unexpected or that you don’t understand.
Think twice about giving a large retainer to any lawyer that’s going to deal with your case. When a lawyer wants a lot of money up front, make sure that anything left over will be returned to you. You may also want to shop around for lawyers who will take a smaller retainer, then charge you any extra.
Try out an attorney referral service. They help you find the best lawyers. They carefully screen according to qualifications and credentials. Other services will list lawyers who only meet the bare minimum required by law. Find out more about different referral services and listings before you use this method to find a lawyer.
If your attorney is super-busy, it may be a while before he works on your case. Just come out and ask him or her if they can spend time on your case. They should be truthful about their ability to commit because you need someone who can do the job for you.
Look at how friendly the staff is in the prospective lawyer’s office. When you make a phone call, figure out how nice the receptionist is and how quickly you get a call back. If you don’t get a call back in a short period of time you may find out that the office doesn’t treat you that well when you work with them.
Keep in mind that a lawyer can’t always work a miracle. If you meet with a lawyer who claims he or she will win your case, guaranteed, be skeptical. In legal matters, nothing is a sure bet.
Ask your lawyer if you can personally do any work so that will help cut down costs you have to pay them. It’s possible that you can help to make phone calls or prepare paperwork. Do little things that are free when you do them yourself and save some money.
Hiring a lawyer is a tough process. Keep this advice in mind when you need to get a lawyer. It is great advice that is going to make your legal issues much less stressful.