When you find yourself in a tough legal bind hiring a skilled lawyer can give you peace of mind. Choose an attorney you can trust by performing a thorough due diligence campaign. Don’t make the mistake of picking the first attorney you find during your research.
Ask your friends and family for referrals. Check to see if your employer offers a discounted legal service and interview a few lawyers to find an experienced attorney who can help you during this difficult time.
Ask Your Employer
Your employer may provide you with a discounted rate for legal services through some partnership with a firm. Ask your boss or manager if your company offers such a service. Finding basic legal documents or counsel through this channel is a convenient way to cover your bases in a time of need. Use free 30 minute consultations – if offered – to decide if you should go the bankruptcy route or not, among other legal issues.
If you have a legit legal claim consider hiring a more expensive attorney to increase your chances of winning the case.
As for Referrals from Your Network
Asking family, friends and co-workers for attorney referrals taps into a most powerful form of marketing. Lawyers that you or your closed friends and family know are generally trustworthy individuals who do their best to maintain their reputation within your network. Even if the attorney practices in a different area they likely know many lawyers from different areas who can fill your specific needs.
Consider using your local or state bar associations’ referral service to find reputable, skilled attorneys for your case. At the very least you can match with local lawyers who may be able to handle your case. Read the American Bar Association’s national Lawyer Referral Directory to find attorneys in your area.
Using a referral network cuts down your due diligence process significantly. Instead of aggressively vetting each lawyer you research you can trust attorneys based on the recommendations of people you know, like and trust.
Interview Potential Matches
Never pick the first attorney who seems to be a fit for your legal needs. Look around to get a feel for different attorneys. Picking the wrong lawyer can cost you a fortune and increase your stress levels significantly. Interview 5 or more attorneys from your lawyer watch list. Ensure the attorneys offer the skills you need to win your case. Scour the State Bar’s website for any disciplinary actions levied against the lawyer. Ask who you’ll be working with. Some more successful, busy attorneys may want to hand you off to a less experienced lawyer from their firm. Don’t allow this to happen.
Inquire into the attorney’s credentials. Each lawyer who passes the bar is legally qualified to practice law but attorneys with specializations or credentials are likely more skilled and better able to handle your case. Ask about the lawyer’s experience regarding similar clients in similar situations. An attorney who handled your previous divorce is probably not qualified or experienced enough to skillfully handle a DUI case.