What is the best way to find a lawyer that can fulfil your needs? Just like any other service, it is important to do proper research prior to picking a lawyer for a case.

The first step is to acquire several recommendations of suitable lawyers that have expertise in the areas needed.

Conducting candidate interviews of the best lawyers is a great place to start. Luckily when you are trying to find an attorney, many of them will give you an initial consultation, which lasts only an hour or so, at no additional charge. During this meeting, you should ask specific questions in order to get the most of out the conversation.

Questions to Ask Them

  • How experienced is this lawyer in the legal matter you want to tackle?
  • If it is a case based in divorce, does he have an adequate knowledge of family law?
  • How long has he been a lawyer? Is he experienced in handling a variety of cases?
  • Also, how successful has he been in solving cases? What is his record of winning disputes?
  • How many of his current cases are dedicated to the same type of problem as yours?
  • Is he skilled in any particular areas? Does he have certifications?
  • What does he charge for his services? How does his system for handling money work?
  • Is he insured for errors in practice, and for how much?
  • Who are the personnel working on the case with him, and how much are they to be paid?
  • Does he have to pay others to take on other tasks he is unequipped to do himself?
  • What are the other costs that are needed to suitably carry out the case?
  • What is the frequency of billing that you can expect?
  • Does he have references that show his expertise in the areas he claims?
  • Does he have a fee for written agreements or representation?
  • How does he contact you? What are his methods of communication?

Questions to Ask Yourself

Another thing to keep in mind when hiring an attorney is that higher fees do not necessarily equate to a more skilled or qualifies individual. If the fee is particularly low, consider the fact that the lawyer is inexperienced or not as capable as one would hope.

There is also a range of questions you should ask yourself following meeting with a lawyer.

  • How experienced is this lawyer in the legal matter you want to tackle?
  • Did the lawyer’s experience and background seem compatible with what you need to handle your case?
  • Were the answers to his questions prompt and timely?
  • Can you see him as someone you would be comfortable doing business with?
  • Was his demeanour/attitude in line with what you want? Did he make you feel comfortable?
  • Do you believe he has the ability to confidently execute your case?
  • How did you feel about his proposed fees and the way they were structured?
  • Are you comfortable with the fees he is asking for?
  • Are the terms of representation to our liking?

You can get extensive information about lawyers and their firms from the Martindale-Hubbell law directory. This directory can be found online at martindale.com and at local public and law libraries. It provides a wealth of information on law firms and the lawyers within. Many lawyers use this guide when they are deciding on talent in the legal sector themselves.

It includes data and common practice of every lawyer in the United States and Canada, as well as having professional profiles of the top lawyers and firms in 160 countries. There are also peer reviews included that can help to make a decision between two candidates of equal stature.

Ask Other Attorneys

You can get help to choose the right lawyer by asking other lawyers. This can give you an idea of some of the qualities of said lawyer that is not available in print or online. These facts may include their ethics, demeanour or reputation.

Before you hire a lawyer, you should contact a disciplinary agency in the state that you live in and verify that they are in good order with the agency. Always make sure to check references, especially in the fact that you found the attorney through the web.

Rating by peer review is a great, objective way of determining how ethical a lawyer is, or how proficient they are at their job. Members of the judiciary can help form these evaluations. You can also decide to see a lawyer’s office in person. This can give you insight to how they are (to a degree).

Requesting a tour can tell you various things about them. How tidy is the office? Is it run well, and what kind of staff are on his/her payroll? Are staff amicable and eager to serve? Was the office close and easy to access?

All of these steps will ensure that you find the best lawyer that fits your needs perfectly.

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