Quick Tips For Finding a Lawyer

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					Quick Tips For Finding a Lawyer
Almost everything we do is affected by laws. There are so many laws that
it would take a person with an average reading skill over a thousand
years just to read the law book. As if we have nothing else to do with
our lives but read laws. So what do we do when a legal situation arises?
Do we handle it ourselves or do we call a lawyer who's been trained in
the legal field? For many people, the thought of calling a lawyer may be
frightening. Sometimes they might not even know if they need a lawyer or
how to even choose one, so they might avoid contacting a lawyer even when
it is in their best interests to do so. However, do your homework before
you hire a lawyer for yourself and/or your business. At the time when you
are faced with serious legal or medical problems, you still need to make
a good, informed decision about who will represent you. And it doesn't
have to be as hard or as costly as you may think to find a good lawyer.
Provided below are some quick tips that can take t he stress out of
finding a lawyer.
Can I represent myself?
You have the right to represent yourself. However, the law is extremely
complex and changes frequently. Unless you dedicate 100% of your time
into educating yourself with all of the laws and lega l procedures
relevant to your case, you stand a good chance of losing. You may very
easily overlook a legal aspect affecting your case that may sometimes
bring unanticipated legal consequences that can be difficult and
expensive to undo. So, you need to weigh the risks and benefits of
representing yourself vs. hiring a lawyer to represent your case.
When do I contact a lawyer?
When faced with a problem that you think it needs legal attention, you
may wish to consult with a lawyer about your legal rights and
responsibilities as soon as possible. Many states have deadlines for
filing lawsuits especially for personal injuries. These so called
"statute of limitations" laws are designed to encourage people to
promptly come forward and present their case. But this doesn't mean that
you have to simply pick the first lawyer you bump into because you're in
a hurry, as you will learn from these tips.
How do I choose the "right" lawyer for me?
From a personal aspect, selecting a lawyer is always a personal matter.
But, as with any service providers, the lawyer is just providing his/her
service to his/her client. So, the lawyer-client relationship needs be
based on trust and open and honest communication so the lawyer could
provide the best of his/her service. It requires a mutual commitment from
both the client and the lawyer. If the client is not cooperating fully,
the lawyer could not provide the best of his/her service. At the same
time, if the lawyer is not easily accessible and prompt in responding to
your phone calls, emails, and requests, you're going to get nothing but
frustration. Hence, when choosing the "right" lawyer for your case you
need to feel 100% comfortable when talking to that lawyer and feel
confident in his or her abilities. If there's even a sing le doubt, you
need to keep looking. Your case is too important to entrust to someone
who does not inspire your confidence.
From a professional aspect, people often believe that simply any lawyer
could handle any case. This misleading confidence frequently works to the
client's disadvantage. No lawyer is skilled in every area of the law. So,
to find the "right" lawyer for your case you need not to be shy about
asking your prospective lawyer questions until you gain full confidence
in his or her ability. Only then would you select that lawyer. Actually,
while asking the questions, you'll be able to observe the lawyer's
responsiveness and readiness to cooperate with you. Some of the most
important questions you need to ask your prospective lawyer when going
through the selection process are:
- What amount of experience do you have in this area of the law (the area
of your legal need)?

- Will you or one of your associates handle my case? - if an associate
handles your case, that's the person you need to inte rview.

- How many cases like mine have you handled? - ask for specifics for each
of the cases.

- Could you provide me with references from some or each of the cases? -
make sure you call each of the clients to learn about their experience.
A responsible and a caring lawyer would have no problems providing you
with answers. If the lawyer is giving you runarounds for each of the
questions and not providing you with specific answers, you need to keep
looking. Also, always check with your State Bar Assoc iation if that
lawyer has been the subject of an ethical complaint or inquiry.
Where do I find a lawyer?
No matter where you look for a lawyer, always keep in mind the above tip
for choosing the right lawyer for you. Nevertheless, here are a few
places to look for a lawyer:
- Yellow Pages and Advertisements - When you open your local yellow pages
doesn't it seem like the doctors and the lawyers cover the half of the
book with advertisements? It almost looks as if they're the only ones
having the money for full blown ad pages. Speaking of ads, unless you
have a marketing/sales knowledge and experience, you would never know how
advertisements work. The advertisements are developed to psychologically
trigger your emotional senses and make you respond to the call of action
of the ad. It's a science of its own. So, you as an average consumer
would have no idea which advertisement is telling the truth and which has
the truth blown out of proportion. But, this is a very good place to at
least get some names and phone numbers from local lawyers and start your
selection process.
- Your Society Circle - Your family, friends, people you work with,
people you talk to, people you know of ... start asking around. This is
one of your most reliable sources. You will have a chance to get the
first hand experience. Someone who has been in a same or a similar
situation could tell you about their experience (good or bad) with their
lawyer. If their experience has been nothing but good, you have a half of
your work done. And even if no one in your society circle could refer you
to a lawyer, they might know of someone else from their society circle
who might have been in a similar situation. Some of the most reliable
referrals come from people you trust - fellow business owners, friends
and family - who have used lawyers recently. Word of mouth from a
satisfied customer generally is very reliable.
- Bar Associations - This is another reliable source. Your local attorney
bar association may maintain an attorney referral service, w hich is a
list of their members by specialty who will consult with you for free or
at a special rate set by the bar association for the first conference.
The Bar Association could also tell you if a lawyer has been a subject of
an ethical complaint or inquiry from past clients.
- The Internet - Indeed the Internet. But, this is your least reliable
source because everything could be put on the 'net. However, just like
with advertisements, you could use the Internet to at least get you a
list of local lawyers practicing in your problem area so you could start
the selection process. On the Internet, search for lawyer directories,
such as Martindale.com; lawyer referral services, such as LegalMatch.com;
people/business finding services, such as Anywho.com; and simply your
favorite search engine.
Disclaimer: The author and publisher of this article have done their best
to give you useful, informative and accurate information. This article
does not represent nor replace the legal advice you need to get from a
lawyer, or other professional if the content of the article involves an
issue you are facing. Laws vary from state-to-state and change from time-
to-time. Always consult with a qualified professional before making any
decisions about the issues described in this article. Thank you.
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posted:10/15/2010
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