Tips on How to Hire a Lawyer

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011 at 10:12 am Posted in Articles, General

By Attorney Mark Longwell

Many people assume that all lawyers are equally qualified to handle their case. In their minds, the decision on which lawyer to hire comes down to finding the one that offers the lowest fee. However, just because someone is a lawyer, doesn’t mean that they are the right lawyer for you, regardless of the fee. While price is important, you should consider many more factors when choosing an attorney.

Lawyers, like all people, vary in their range of education, experience, skill, and price. Of course, you should make sure you get an Orlando attorney that offers you the best and most qualified representation, at a reasonable price. You can accomplish this by keeping the following principles in mind:

Meet with the attorney. Don’t just call.

This is serious business. Your case means a lot to you, and rightfully so. You wouldn’t  buy a house or a car without taking a good look at them first, would you? You should arrange for an appointment to personally meet with the attorney you are considering. Many lawyers will offer a free consultation. Therefore, there is no cost to you to meet with the lawyer for an initial review of your case. You should make sure the meeting will be with the attorney who will actually handle your case. While the consultation is free to you, it can be very valuable in the information you may learn about your case and the attorney you are considering.

Find the most qualified lawyer for your case.

When you meet with the attorney, you can ask them about their qualifications for handling your case. If you aren’t feeling bold enough to ask, many lawyer have websites or literature you can review that will contain such information. You should consider:

  • Is the attorney a licensed member of the state and court in which your case is will proceed? Are they in good standing?
  • Did the attorney graduate from an accredited and reputable law school?
  • Is the lawyer experienced in handling your type of case? How many such cases have they had? How many years have they practiced law and represented individuals in your type of case.
  • Does the attorney present themselves well? Do they appear knowledgeable, confident, articulate? Remember, the same attorney will represent you in court and must be able to be persuasive and convincing on your behalf to a judge, jury and opposing counsel.
  • Does the attorney seem to have a strategy for getting the best possible outcome in your type of case? Do they understand the issues and seem to have a good idea of how they will resolve them?
  • Does the attorney offer reasonable fees? As a general rule, you get what you pay for. However, you should be cautious if the fees seems too high compared to what other well qualified attorneys are charging. A fee that is too low is also a red flag. You want to make sure that you get the most qualified lawyer. Even the best attorneys offer reasonable fees. Some firms even offer payment plans.

In summary, don’t short change yourself by not taking the time to find the best lawyer for you. Your case is too important; taking a small amount of time to find the right attorney will be well worth it.

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