There are certain things in life that you don’t mess around with – and your freedom is one of them.
If you’re facing legal charges, an ugly divorce, or hefty fines that could all negatively impact your life, you need legal counsel you can trust.
An experienced lawyer will have your best interest in mind and do their best to get you the justice you deserve. You may be wondering, “How do I know if my lawyer is good?”
With thousands of attorney websites flooding the Internet, all promising to get you substantial compensation, it can be hard to know who to trust.
This article will detail the characteristics your attorney should have and how to find the perfect fit.
Signs of a Good Lawyer
Let’s kick things off by outlining the qualities and attributes of a good lawyer.
Communication is key in any relationship and the one between you and your attorney is no different. In fact, communication is one of the most important elements when facing any legal case.
Choose a lawyer who takes the time to explain every aspect of your case. They should answer any questions you have and clarify anything you don’t understand.
Communication also means being available and responsive. A reputable attorney will respond to your phone calls or emails in a timely fashion. The lawyer may not be able to contact you directly but should have a member of their staff respond in a reasonable amount of time.
Keeps You in the Loop
In addition to communicating with you, the lawyer you hire should also keep you informed on the details of your case. You should be privy to any information or changes that occur.
A professional attorney won’t make any decisions or agree to any terms without first discussing them with you.
Empathetic but Firm
Your lawyer is on your side. Their main goal is to help you succeed. This means they have a certain level of empathy for your situation and act with your best interests in mind.
But that doesn’t mean your lawyer will always tell you you’re right or agree with you. In fact, the right lawyer will help you see both sides of the argument and prepare you for resistance and rebuttal.
A lawyer who is overly empathetic may overlook possible hurdles and leave unintentional holes in your case. You need legal counsel who is objective, realistic, and honest.
Outlines Fees Upfront
Speaking of honesty…
No one likes hidden fees. Before you hire a lawyer you need to find out what and how you’ll be billed.
Some lawyers offer flat rate fees, which means you pay a designated amount regardless of the outcome of your case or duration. In most cases, a lawyer has varying fees that encompass the workload, research required, and communication.
An ethical attorney will give you a price range in the beginning so you have an idea of what you’re up against.
Your lawyer should carry themselves in a professional manner at all times. Their office should be clean, neat, and organized. Their office staff should also be pleasant and knowledgable.
If your trial makes it to court, you want a lawyer who presents themselves in a professional manner. After all, they’re representing you. Your fate is in their hands. Don’t trust your future with an attorney who doesn’t take this immense responsibility seriously.
Use Your Judgement
At the end of the day, trust your instincts. After scheduling a consultation with a lawyer, did you get a good feeling about them? Did your personalities mesh?
Attorneys who are abrupt and crass probably won’t work well with a client who is more sensitive and needs reassurance. On the other hand, if you’re facing an ugly divorce or custody battle you may prefer a ruthless lawyer who won’t hold back.
How to Find the Best Lawyer for Your Case
Now that you know what qualities to look for in a good lawyer, let’s discuss how to find one.
The Internet has an answer for everything. As mentioned earlier, there are thousands of attorney websites online, so where do you begin?
Start by reading reviews. What are other people saying about a specific attorney? Did they have a positive experience? What was the outcome of their case?
While online reviews aren’t the only determining factor, if a lawyer has nothing but bad reviews, you may want to keep looking.
You can also research candidates on Avvo, which offers information on the lawyer’s background. Practicing attorneys might want to know how to improve your Avvo rating to help make a good first impression on prospective clients.
Choose a Lawyer with Experience in the Field
Most lawyers specialize in a specific type of law. Here are just a few of the many fields:
- Public sector
- Personal injury
Choose a lawyer experienced in the type of case or charges you face. An experienced lawyer will have first-hand knowledge about recent laws and how best to handle your case.
People often ask friends and family for recommendations when making decisions about everything from where to eat dinner to what doctor to use. So, why not ask for recommendations when choosing a lawyer?
If you know someone who recently faced a legal battle similar to your own ask them about the representation they used. Even if they had a bad experience, that will help you check one attorney’s name off the list.
Ask the trusted person what they liked and disliked about the lawyer. They may even be comfortable sharing the outcome of their case. Use any information your friend provides to ask the right questions during your initial meeting.
Important Legal Questions: How Do I Know If My Lawyer is Good?
Have you recently hired an attorney but are now questioning your decision? Are you wondering how do I know if my lawyer is good or how to find a good lawyer?
Knowing what qualities and characteristics to look for, as well as the warning signs of an unprofessional lawyer, can help.
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