If you need to find a lawyer in the United States, a dearth of choices certainly is not an issue; rather, the sheer volume of practicing attorneys can pose a problem as you may not know who to pick. When it comes to finding the right legal representation for your needs, there are some things to consider that will help you find the right lawyer.
Use Caution with Lawyer Referral Directories
Large lawyer referral directories can certainly provide you with the names of numerous attorneys in various fields of law but they may not be the best avenue. Those listed as the preferred attorneys are often so because they paid the most money, not because they have the best track record or because they are truly a good lawyer.
Check Independent Lawyer Reviews
There are several quality attorney rating services that can provide detailed information on attorneys and they can be a great help in finding the lawyer for you. Examples include having an AV rating from Martindale-Hubbell or being listed in ‘’The Best Lawyer in America’’, ‘’Super Lawyer’’, or ‘’Pre-eminent Law Firm.’’
Reach out to Family and Friends
People you know can always serve as a great resource of information. Talk to anyone you know who experienced similar legal issues and ask them about their attorneys.
Find a Lawyer With Experience in Your Case
Even within a particular area of law, there are countless situations that occur. If you have a health care issue for example, you do not just want a lawyer with experience in these sorts of suits, but with experience particular to your problem. If you have suffered a traumatic brain injury for example, it would be good to find a lawyer experienced with this type of case who knows medicine, the doctors typically called for the defense,etc..
Discuss Fees Firsthand
What and how lawyers charge for their services can vary greatly. Always consider lawyers who give a free consultation. Before you hire your attorney, get detailed information on his fees for his services and the services of his paralegals. While you may not be able to work out exact costs before hand, this important discussion will give a very clear picture of what these services will likely cost you.
Pick a Lawyer Who Will Be Available
While it is reasonable to have other associates or paralegals work on certain aspects of the case, it is important that you pick an attorney who you will have access to. If he is so busy that you will always be dealing with his paralegal or secretary, you have to question whether he will have the proper time to devote to your case.
Investigate Their Track Record
Obviously you want a lawyer with a good track record. If you have an auto accident case for example, does this lawyer actually try cases or does he primarily settle? If settling is what you want, then this might not be an issue, but if you want to fight a case, you want to find a lawyer who actually goes to court.
There are myriad legal associations that a lawyer can be affiliated with based on their location, area of law,etc…Being a member of associations related to their practice of law can be a good indicator of their knowledge and experience.
Check Out Legal Aid Services
If you need legal representation but cannot afford a lawyer, legal aid services can be a good resource for connecting you with attorneys who work for free or for reduced fees.
Conduct a Background Check
Any lawyer in the running for your business should be checked first to make sure they are in good standing with the state bar association. The lawyer disciplinary agency in your state can provide this information.
Kelli Cooper is a freelance writer who covers a range of topics. If you have been injured and are in need of representation in the Chicago area, click here for more information.