How to Choose a Suitable Attorney
Whether you are in the process of a divorce, have been in a car accident, experienced discrimination at work or suffered injuries from a slip and fall, you shouldn’t try to handle all of your emotions as well as tackle the legal process alone. There are many crisis situations that arise in life, and in those times, you can benefit considerably from having an attorney with a wealth of knowledge that supports you and fights for your rights. So how do you choose one that’s suitable for you and your specific circumstances? Selecting an attorney is a decision that requires careful thought and consideration, and it’s in your best interests to follow these steps before hiring just any lawyer out of the phone book.
Ask For Referrals and Conduct an Internet Search
As with any service, referrals are one of the wisest ways to find acceptable attorney candidates. Friend, family and colleague recommendations are a good place to start, but if that doesn’t yield any results the American Bar Association may be able to assist you in finding someone locally. It’s no secret that the Internet is a viable source for many things, and lawyer services are no exception. Conducting a quick search should give you several options to check out, especially if they’re listed with agreeable reviews.
Prepare a List of Questions
There are several things you should get to know about an attorney before choosing one to represent you. Having a list of questions to ask your prospects will ensure that you’ve covered everything. The information you will want to gather includes length of time in practice, experience (especially in the area of law that your case falls in), record of successful outcomes, policy on communicating with you about new developments and if there is anyone else that would be working on your case. During your consultation, it’s also a good idea to assess how comfortable you feel with this attorney and how professionally they conduct themselves and their office.
Decide on a Budget
You must also consider what your financial plan is while searching for the right lawyer. Their services will only work for you if they’re something you can honestly budget for. Some attorneys may charge for every meeting, phone call and paper filed while others only take payment if they win your case. When considering a particular attorney, find out right away what their protocol is regarding payments so that you aren’t surprised later with an invoice you can’t afford.
Have a Background Check Done
It’s common practice and highly suggested that you obtain a background check on an attorney that you think you might want to hire. There are ways to easily inquire with your local state agency about any disciplinary actions that have been brought against a lawyer so that you can be aware of complaints that have been filed. You can also see what other members of the bar have to say about an attorney’s services with the Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings.
Expertise in the law and trustworthiness are important qualities to look for in an attorney. Following these steps will help you narrow down your options until you find the one that’s the best match for you.
About the Author
Tiffany Olson loves to write about anything law related and also loves to share information with the public via social media platforms and guest blogging. In her downtime she loves to read, make art, and do yoga.