Find an Excellent Legal Attorney
Lawyers provide advice explain your case as much as possible. But before hiring anyone, you must conduct thorough research to find the best lawyer. If you want to learn how you can get started on your search for an attorney, read the following sections.
Ask for ReferencesIf you are trying to find a legal attorney, then the first step is to speak with people in your community. Speaking with individuals who have been through the same legal situation you are now in is important. For example, if you have experienced sexual harassment, speak with someone in women’s group. When you have spoken to enough people, you will come up with an extensive list of lawyers.
However, don't just decide based on recommendations. The same lawyer can have a very different impression on different people. Make sure to first have a consultation before hiring anyone, make sure his or her style suits you and that you feel comfortable with that person. Discuss your case with them and take a few days to decide.
Additionally, you can also find lawyers on listing websites. Most of these websites allow you to locate lawyers near you and filter them by type of legal case. You can filter out by the types of attorney there are and find their contact information immediately.
Do You Need a Specialist?Consider if you need an expert for your area of concern. If you are an aspiring entrepreneur, then consult with a lawyer that is familiar with small business law. You can hire a general practitioner, but these attorneys often don't know enough about most legal areas to be of help.
Take advantage of the specialized knowledge the lawyer has. When you ask how much they charge, do not be surprised if their fees are slightly more expensive. However, if the information they provide is valuable, then they may be worth the high price.
Review Their WebsitesWhile searching for a lawyer online, you may come across several attorney websites. Once you have a list of attorneys you want to contact, look through their website first. Clicking through their site can provide an idea of the legal advice they provide and the fees they charge. You may also come across their law school as well as their specialization.
Review the education, specialization and work history of the attorney because this will provide an idea of their legitimacy. You may also want to look for an attorney with a minimum of three years of experience in their area of practice. In addition to the three-year minimum, they should also be currently practicing the type of law you require assistance in.
Meet with Prospective AttorneysOnce you have done your research and narrowed down your list, you will want to contact them. But you must first prepare before entering the office for a consultation. Create a list of questions you want to ask them, for example, if they offer pro bono services. You may also want to ask them about pricing because each attorney has a different pricing model.
Additionally, you want to ask them how quickly they will complete your case and their success rate. You want to inquire about what their track record is with your type of case. You may even ask for references from prior clients.
Another question you want to ask is their availability. Not all attorneys will start your case immediately. You will also want to know who your primary source of contact will be in the case, such as an assistant.
Considering Costs and Negotiating FeesAs stated before, attorneys have different pricing models regarding their services. There are three models attorneys commonly use:
- Flat fees. Attorneys will charge one fee upfront for handling the case. This is common in criminal and bankruptcy cases.
- Contingency fees. A legal attorney will not collect fees unless the money is recovered from a settlement or trial. This is common for personal injury cases.
- Hourly fees. Clients will be charged the number of hours the lawyer worked. This is common in long and complicated litigations.