For any legal problem that is of sufficient complexity or involves money, it is a good idea to engage an experienced lawyer. A lawyer is a trained legal professional who can help anyone understand the law; prepare letters and legal documents; mediate conflicts with other parties; help clients evaluate different options; and represent them in court. There are times when people really need these professionals, but the question is, “How and where can a person find a good attorney?”
Ask for Referrals
Someone looking for a great lawyer can ask friends, family members, and colleagues for some recommendations. They can talk to people in their community and ask them about the lawyer they hired when they faced a similar legal issue. Even if the lawyer they hired practices in a different area, they may know other good lawyers and can pass their contact details on.
Use Online Services
There are many “find an attorney” sites. The sites ask users a few questions and connect them with a local lawyer based on the type of legal case. Some sites maintain lawyer directories and enable anyone to check attorneys’ profiles to make a choice – they provide data regarding education, experience, and fees of every lawyer in their directory. Online lawyer referral services may be beneficial in the search for a good attorney because they screen professionals and list attorneys with specific experience and qualifications.
A Few Questions to Ask
After finding a few prospects, it’s important not to take a hasty decision. The first thing to establish is whether the attorney provides the service required. It is then wise to visit the State Bar’s website to ensure selected lawyers haven’t faced any disciplinary actions in the past.
Assuming those criteria are satisfied questions to ask and have answered are:
- Who at the firm would take the case – e.g. a senior or junior associate – and who would be the main point of contact?
- Evidence of credentials and experience in any specific areas, such as divorce or tax law
- Fees – is there a fixed fee or is work billed by hours?
A good attorney will also ask a prospective client questions about the case before taking it on.
Anyone interested in finding the best attorney should pay attention to all these points and take some time before finalizing their decision of working with a particular attorney in their local area.