As someone who’s been a lawyer for several years, I know just how important it is to fight for your rights. The first step you should take on the long journey to justice is finding the right litigator for you. However, regardless of what movies and television might lead you to believe, all lawyers are not made equal. There are good lawyers, bad lawyers, unprepared lawyers, rude lawyers and everything else in between. In order to give yourself the best shot for success, you need to find the perfect person to handle your case. Here are a few tips and tricks on how to go about doing that.
Vet Their Communication Skills
A large part of a lawyer’s job is to communicate your case to the judge and the jury. If you have a lawyer who isn’t good at communication, you’re already off to a bad start. You can easily test this by simply listening to them speak. What kind of language are they using? Is it professional or are they keeping it informal? How quickly do they respond to your phone calls or emails? Do they respond within the hour? Within 24 hours? Or do you need to nudge them? It’s incredibly important to get a sense of how your lawyer speaks. I’ve won cases before simply because the other lawyer mumbled, was ill-prepared or underestimated the case.
Inquire About Fees
This may seem trivial to add to this list, but a lot of times, many people hire a lawyer to handle their case under the assumption that lawyers charge a flat rate. This is not always the case. Depending on the firm and the lawyer, some may charge you per hearing or per hour or some other method. This should be one of the very first questions to ask during the initial meeting. You simply do not want to be blindsided by outrageous fees.
Ask About Experience
At the end of the day, the whole reason you are hiring a lawyer is so that you will win your case and obtain justice. One of the best ways to guarantee your victory is by hiring a lawyer who has won. You want a lawyer who is seasoned enough to win your trial, but also not so experienced that he or she will charge an arm and a leg. You also want to make sure that you are choosing a lawyer with experience for your specific needs. Not all lawyers are well-versed in the same areas. A divorce lawyer would be much better suited to handle a divorce trial as opposed to a criminal trial.
When you are searching for a lawyer, the bottom line is that you should feel out and interview your prospective lawyer and use your instincts to make a call. Try your hardest to learn as much about them as possible during an introductory interview and make a decision from there. Choosing the right lawyer can make or break your case, so make sure to give it some heavy thought.